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Bengals 2016 Free Agent Profile: Andre Smith

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The Bengals have key players with expiring contracts. Who should be retained and who should they part ways with? We're taking a look at each of the Bengals' 2016 free agents and what they have to offer.

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Andre Smith was the Bengals first round pick in 2009 and he arrived with headlines and baggage but ended up being a solid player for Cincinnati through the years. He's the likeliest Bengals starter to leave in free agency as the team drafted his replacement (twice) last year. In 2015, Smith played in 14 games, missing two weeks due to a concussion. He also had 11 penalties, including five false starts and three holding calls.

Where he wins: Andre Smith has been a powerful right tackle for the Bengals for most of his 73 starts. When he's on, Smith has as many impact blocks as anybody on a stacked Cincinnati offensive line. Known as a run blocker, Smith has been a better pass protector in Cincinnati's system. He uses his long arms and wide base to make speed rushers take the long way around him and power rushers succumb to his weight/strength. As a run blocker, Smith flashes here-and-there and can usually drive his man back when used at the point of attack.

Concerns: Smith was never the most athletic tackle and with injuries and age (29), he seems slower than ever. He doesn't bend well and his feet often drag when he's moving in space. Because of this, when Smith gets beat in pass protection, it's on quick outside-in rushes when he can't move his feet and recover. In the run game, Smith can play too high and get neutralized. Usually strong, Smith suffered a triceps injury in 2014 and had a miserable 2015 season when it came to power run blocking. His last two years have been mixed with some of his worst football as a pro and that would concern me as a potential buyer in free agency.

Overall, Smith has been a good player for the Bengals and I think he has a few starting years left in the NFL. The right tackle free agent market isn't too large and Smith may be one of the best players available at the position. There was always some who thought Smith would make a very good NFL guard and maybe he'll find a team willing to put him inside to rejuvenate his career. I don't expect him to get a large deal in the open market and he has the potential to be a steal because of it.