AFC Note: Browns, Steelers, Titans



  • Dan Labbe of writes that based on the six offseason practices open to the media, first-round QB Baker Mayfield did not look ready to compete with Tyrod Taylor for the No. 1 quarterback job.
  • Even so, Labbe admits that things can change once training camp opens and teams are playing preseason games.
  • While DeShone Kizer struggled last year, Labbe doesn’t think starting Mayfield out of the gate would be nearly as disastrous, considering that there’s more structure around him this year.
  • It’s worth mentioning that the Browns have consistently maintained that Taylor is their starter and they have no plans of this changing in the coming months.


There has been speculation that Joshua Dobbs could be the odd-man-out in Pittsburgh after the Steelers used a third-round pick QB Mason Rudolph this year. However, Dobbs says his approach hasn’t changed this offseason and he’s focused on being ready to play if the opportunity surfaces.

“I just try to attack it the same every day, come ready to play,” Dobbs said, via Joe Rutter of the Tribune-Review. “I’m ready to work, and I have that mindset when I step in the building. Of course, [drafting Rudolph] raises an added element of competition, but it doesn’t change my mindset and how I approach what I do on the field.

“I just have to go out and compete and play well when I get my opportunities.


Titans QB Marcus Mariota has dealt with some injuries the past few years, which is why he’s focused on doing what he can to get rid of the ball and hopefully prevent some hits moving forward.

“I think it comes with playing the game, having experience,” Mariota said, via the Tennessean. “Obviously there’s a time when the journey’s ending, and you have to just understand that and either get down or throw the ball away. I think the last three years I’ve kind of learned when that time is. Obviously there’s a time and a place to try to extend plays and try to get a first down; at the same time there’s also opportunities for us as quarterbacks to protect ourselves, and we have to understand that and understand the situation.”

Titans QBs coach Pat O’Hara explained that while they clearly want to prevent Mariota from taking unnecessary hits, they also don’t want to hinder his ability to make plays.

He’s so fluid. It helps when you have a quarterback with the athleticism that Marcus has to extend plays,” O’Hara said. “He throws really well on the run, and he enjoys throwing on the run. That’s something he’s done his whole career, going back to when he played youth football. That’s huge, that he has the ability to do that.

“And then certainly self-preservation and awareness and trying to avoid injury is obviously important. You don’t want to take away that element of a quarterback’s game with his ability to run, but obviously health is something that has to be of the utmost importance.”

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