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Draft countdown: Bengals 2009 first-round pick

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CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 16: Andre Smith #71 of the Cincinnati Bengals blocks against the Cleveland Browns at Paul Brown Stadium on September 16, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 16: Andre Smith #71 of the Cincinnati Bengals blocks against the Cleveland Browns at Paul Brown Stadium on September 16, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /
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The Cincinnati Bengals selected offensive tackle Andre Smith in the first-round of the 2009 draft.

There are nine days until the 2018 NFL Draft begins and we go back nine years to take a look at who the Cincinnati Bengals took in the first round of the 2009 draft. Cincinnati selected offensive tackle Andre Smith with their sixth overall pick of the draft.

After his first two seasons with the club suffering injuries that kept him from reaching full potential, Smith played his last two seasons of his rookie deal as a solid right tackle. He went on to play for the Minnesota Vikings for a year where more injuries came into play before returning to the Bengals in 2017. Cincinnati brought him back in hopes for him to take over the right guard position but ended up being a backup tackle when the season started.

While Smith was never the dominant tackle that the Bengals had hoped for he was a part of an offensive line that helped get the team to the playoffs six times during an eight-season stretch. Between weight and injuries holding him back during his career with Cincinnati, Smith never turned into a top tackle. Starting in 81 games for the Bengals, playing in 95, Smith was one of the best tackles last season.

As offensive tackles, Cedric Ogbuehi and Jake Fisher struggled and Fisher was sidelined with an irregular heartbeat, Smith stepped in and was the best of the three on the right side of the line. Smith started eight games for Cincinnati last season before an injury kept him out the last two weeks of the season. It was rumored that the team wanted to re-sign Smith to another deal after his one-year deal expired this offseason but ended up going another route.

With the trade for left tackle Cordy Glenn and signing of right tackle Bobby Hart, Smith decided to leave the Bengals for a new team in 2018 as he signed a contract with the Arizona Cardinals. Moving to a team that will be a run-heavy offense is exciting for Smith as he believes he can bring a valuable piece to their run game as running back David Johnson returns from injury.

Next: Draft countdown: Bengals 2008 first-round pick

Andre Smith has seen his career fall to injuries keeping him from his full potential. He flashed a couple seasons of great right tackle play but couldn’t get further than that. Each year he has sustained injuries and with bringing in other backups and possible draft prospects in this year’s draft, it didn’t make sense for the Bengals to put another big price on a tackle after acquiring Glenn who is costing around $9 million a year. He will try and revamp his career in Arizona who is likely to be a run-heavy team in 2018 which Smith could possibly see starting time with.

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