NFL free agent tracker: Bengals sign TE Alex Smith

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Cincinnati added a veteran backup tight end in free agent Alex Smith.

The Cincinnati Bengals have signed tight end Alex Smith according to Adam Schefter. Smith is an eight-year veteran who spent his last three seasons with the Cleveland Browns and should offer solid depth behind Jermaine Gresham.

Last season Smith totaled 13 receptions for 47 yards in 12 games, but was used much more as a blocking tight end than as a receiving threat. Smith spent his first four seasons with Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden in Tampa Bay. While working under Gruden with the Bucs, Smith was a much more effective receiver with 129 receptions for 1,252 yards and 11 touchdowns in four seasons, but he will likely be used primarily as a blocker with the Bengals.

Smith will join Gresham, Richard Quinn, and Orson Charles in the Bengals' group of tight ends. Cincy Jungle points out that Quinn is a similar, but less decorated player when compared to Smith and predicts that Smith will fall into a role similar to what Reggie Kelly brought to the Bengals during his seven years in Cincinnati.

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