Bengals take another risk

April, 25, 2009
4/25/09
5:08
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

The Cincinnati Bengals got protection for their $100-million quarterback.

But was Alabama left tackle Andre Smith the right pick?

With Virginia left tackle Eugene Monroe still on the board for Cincinnati at No. 6 (he went to the Jaguars at No. 8), the Bengals chose Smith instead. The Bengals' history of drafting players with character concerns is well documented, and this pick will certainly be questioned once again in the Queen City.

Smith was suspended for Alabama's bowl game, had a shaky NFL combine, fired his agent and had a decent, but not great, pro day. But Cincinnati was enamored by Smith's game film, which is solid.

Quarterback Carson Palmer had two season-ending injuries in the past four seasons, so taking a tackle was a solid move. But whether Smith was the proper pick at this position is debatable. For more on Smith, click here.

In other Bengals news, Cincinnati now has to consider the future of current starting left tackle Levi Jones, who has been hit hard by injuries the past several seasons. Jones likely doesn't want to be a backup in Cincinnati, so the team could field trade offers soon or decide to release Jones.

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