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2013 NFL Free Agency:Ian Rapoport: Bengals Working Hard to Bring Andre Smith Back to Cincinnati

The Bengals are reportedly the favorite to bring back the right tackle

On a day where nearly every big-time free agent is getting wined and dined, signing lucrative contracts, the news on right tackle Andre Smith has been suspiciously quiet.

NFL Network recently had Ian Rapoport on to discuss free agents, speculating that Smith would return to the Bengals next season. Rapoport said, and I am summarizing, that the Bengals feel as though Smith is an integral part of the team. He emphasized that other teams were wary of Smith due to past weight issues.

Rapoport did not offer up any other potential spots for Smith but he closed by guessing that Smith would be back with the Bengals on a long-term contract next season.

Retaining Smith would certainly be a relief for the Bengals. It allows the team to focus on other needs in the draft outside of right tackle. If they are unable to secure Smith, they may look at Alabama's DJ Fluker or Florida State's Menelik Watson in the first round of the draft.