Cincinnati Bengals Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals find themselves once again needing to replace a key tight end in their offense after the departure of Hayden Hurts this offseason, but it sounds like the team feels confident in the position heading into next season.

The Bengals signed free agent tight end Irv Smith Jr. last month, and head coach Zac Taylor thinks he can fill the void left by Hurst.

“Yeah, we think he can come in and play that role for us,” Taylor said according to “There’s always competition in that room, but that’s the vision that we have for Irv to come in there and fill that role that Hayden had for us.”

Taylor revealed that with tight end Drew Sample returning, the team feels confident about the tight end position next season.

“I feel really good about adding Irv,” Taylor said. “He’s a good weapon for us based on what he’s done so far. We liked him coming out of the draft and the years he spent in Minnesota, I think he fits what we’re looking for, and getting Drew back is important for us as well. You know, he’s been so valuable for us, you know, got hurt in the second week and didn’t get a chance to play, but we like what he’s done for us over the years. And then we got all those guys, Devin (Asiasi) and a bunch of other guys that have really done a nice job last year, whether it’s on the practice squad or on the 53, and so guys that we’re excited about their future also.”

We’ll have to see how these moves work out for the Bengals.