Bengals ORT Smith showing improvement

Posted Oct. 22, 2010 @ 11 a.m.
Posted By Mike Wilkening

Bengals second-year ORT Andre Smith finally could be on the verge of breaking through and securing a starting job, the way we hear it. Smith, the team's first-round pick in 2009, is pushing incumbent Dennis Roland. Conditioning concerns, as well as foot surgery kept the 6-4, 345-pound Smith sidelined in the offseason, and he began training camp on the PUP list because of the injury. Head coach Marvin Lewis publicly criticized Smith for his approach to the game during training camp, and even left open the possibility of Smith beginning the season on the PUP list, but Smith has played in every game, and leading up to Week Seven, Lewis recently praised him for his improvement. "He's made huge strides," Lewis said. The Bengals appear happy with Smith's work ethic, conditioning and improvement in both pass blocking and run blocking, we're told.