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Anyone Surprised?

If you’ve been a Bengals fan as long as I have, you had to see this coming. It’s all too familiar. Like watching the Titanic steam towards an iceberg at full speed. These types of things, seen as the surreal in other NFL cities, are the typical in Cincinnati.

Just two days after finally ending his 30 day holdout, first round pick, OT extraordinaire and all-you-can-eat all-star Andre Smith injured himself today in, wait for it… a non-contact drill. A fractured foot is the diagnosis. As it turns out, the euphoria of having him in camp lasted less than 48 hours. Barely long enough for us to get the contract specifics (which are getting more peculiar by the minute), or for him find the closest Ponderosa.

The Bengals have already attempted to put a positive spin on the news. He’ll be out “a few weeks” by Marvin Lewis’ press statement. It’s a mild injury they say and it doesn’t require surgery. He’ll get an opportunity to observe, catch up on the playbook, and watch tape. The team will be able to use the full two-week roster exemption afforded them to develop other players. Anthony Collins was already entrenched as the starter anyway.

Yeah, that’s all great.

But once again, our snake bit, woe begotten striped crusaders can’t catch a break. Smith has taken the first gimpy step towards bustville, population David Klingler, Akili Smith, Dan Wilkinson, Reinard Wilson, Ki-Jana Cater, Peter Warrick, David Pollack, Chris Perry, and Kenny Irons. Déjà vu anyone?

Of course, I may be overreacting. Smith might be a fast healer. He could be starting by the midway point and proving me wrong with pancake blocks, gaping running holes for Cedric Benson, and perfect pass protection. He could have a hall of fame career in the Queen City, and this inauspicious start to his career will be nothing more than an interesting footnote. Call me crazy, but history suggests otherwise.

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