Remember how everyone thought that story that Andre Smith was going to fire his current agent and return to the agent he had before the draft? Remember how everyone ripped us (and others) for putting gasoline on something that was just a rumor?
Well HippopotaSmith has fired Priority Sports and has re-hired Alvin Keels...just as he planned all along. Priority Sports took the opportunity to release a statement that sheds a little light onto the player the Bengals just drafted 6th overall:
“In regards to Andre Smith, we are moving forward and devoting all of our attention on the high character, hard working and honest clients of Priority Sports.
“We were asked to come in at the last minute to provide credibility to his draft status and we succeeded in that task. Soon after the draft, Andre Smith became a tremendous distraction to our company. What we have subsequently determined is that Andre Smith does not match the culture of Priority Sports and the character of the clients we take so much pride in representing.
“This will be our final statement on this matter.”
Even Bengals.com has the press release from Priority on their team website, listed here.
Has Andre Smith cost himself a lot of money? It's fair to say that the Bengals might try and 'punish' Smith for his bait and switch maneuver by really digging in on his contract. From the whole Chad Johnson situation, we know that Mike Brown and Bengals management has no problem being stubborn to make a point. Suffice it to say that I would be surprised if Smith was in camp on-time this season.
Look, HippopotaSmith could turn out to be a fantastic, pro-bowl left (or right) tackle in the NFL. The point is the Bengals should have known about this and they have forfeited their right to take chances anymore in the draft, especially at #6 overall. Eugene Monroe was also sitting there at #6...solid character, excellent in pass protection (the goal of all this was to protect Carson's blind side, right?), and many called him the best overall tackle in the draft. I realize some said that about Jason Smith and the Hippo as well, but Monroe excelled at pass protection. The only real knock on Monroe was that he might have bad knees. You know who else was supposed to have bad knees? Anthony Munoz.
There are too many people with loose lips around the league that should have tipped the Bengals off to this potential situation, and the Bengals have stated that Smith originally dumping Keels for Priority was a factor in their decision to draft Smith. Again, this is what happens when you don't have a proper front office or general manager with contacts throughout the league.
I know, I know. Smith hasn't had one day of training camp or taken one snap in the NFL yet. But, you have to admit, things are not off to a great start. And, we are staring down the barrel of another Bengals blunder. Players without high character, without a strong work ethic, and that are not honestly dedicated to football are players we simply can't afford anymore in Cincinnati...despite their 'talent' potential.