CINCINNATI -- As the Cincinnati Bengals continue navigating life without starting right tackle Andre Smith, they shook up their offensive line ahead of Sunday's game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, giving a starting guard his first career start at Smith's old spot.
One week after keeping just two true offensive tackles on their active game-day roster, the Bengals kept three true tackles this week, while also deciding to move left guard Clint Boling to right tackle. He'll be starting in place of Marshall Newhouse, the backup who had played parts of the last two games at right tackle in place of Smith, who was lost for the season two weeks ago with a triceps tear.
Against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week, Boling played parts of two drives at right tackle. Until its finish, the first of the two drives was one of the Bengals' better series of the game. They moved the ball efficiently for 58 yards to the Bucs' 20 before quarterback Andy Dalton threw an interception while targeting A.J. Green in the end zone. That drive also included three straight misdirection type plays that included a direct-snap run by a receiver, a sweep screen to another and a reverse.
Boling's move also comes after the Bengals signed veteran tackle and NFL Players Association president Eric Winston earlier in the week. He hasn't played since training camp when he was with the Seahawks. Winston likely wasn't considered to start at the position because he hasn't yet had time to fully learn the Bengals' offense, although he and coaches contend he's made rapid progress since signing Tuesday.
With Boling switching to the right edge, Mike Pollak is slated to come off the bench to play left guard.
In addition to those changes, the Bengals also declared another tackle, Tanner Hawkinson, inactive. It's the fourth straight game he's been inactive. A pair of receivers also aren't playing in Dane Sanzenbacher and James Wright. The latter suffered a knee injury at Tampa Bay and didn't practice all week. Wright arguably just had his best game, too. He caught three passes for 59 yards against Tampa Bay. Each of them resulted in third-down conversions.
Here are the full lists of inactives for both teams:
WR Dane Sanzenbacher
LB Chris Carter
OT Tanner Hawkinson
WR James Wright
DE Margus Hunt
RB Dri Archer
WR Justin Brown
CB B.W. Webb
QB Landry Jones