Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said he expects Bengals right tackle Andre Smith to be back in town for mandatory mini camp next week, according to Jay Morrison.
#Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said he expects Andre Smith to be here for mandatory mini camp next week.— Jay Morrison (@JayMorrisonCMG) June 6, 2013
Smith has missed all of OTAs so far, and according to Lewis, he has been dealing with personal issues. In his absence, the Bengals have turned to young players, like Reid Fragel and Tanner Hawkinson, which will be valuable for young players and the coaching staff.
Smith was re-signed this offseason to a three-year, $18.1 million contract during the draft. Bringing Smith back to Cincinnati was a priority for the Bengals, and it kept their offensive line in tact. Smith has transformed from a possible first-round bust into one of the league's better right tackles.
One of the largest concerns of the Bengals fan base is Smith's physical status. He hasn't been the most driven player when it comes to keeping in shape in the past and some fans worry that he may have put back on a lot of weight during while the rest of the team has been working out at OTAs.
Even if this is true, being back for mandatory mini camp and beyond should whip Smith into shape. Hopefully he's in shape and won't be needing to shed any weight before the season, though.