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AFC Notes: Bengals, Dolphins, Steelers

Bengals

Bengals HC Marv Lewis referred to second-round RB Joe Mixon a “natural” runner and pass catcher, but would like to see him stay consistent in pass protection.

Play with great pad level, and protect the football. He’s very natural at the other stuff,” Lewis said, via Geoff Hobson of the Bengals’ official site. “And then he is going to get an opportunity to protect the quarterback. The rest of the stuff he does very naturally, like running or catching. But (I want to see) his pad level, and making sure his tracks are correct. Those are the things we are going to continue to evaluate and make sure he gets up to speed on and stays consistent. So far, he has been very good with that, and I don’t expect that to change.

Dolphins

  • Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk writes that while there has been some speculation that the Dolphins may consider moving on from QB Ryan Tannehill next year, he finds it hard to imagine they would cut or even trade him.
  • First off, this would require newly signed QB Jay Cutler to have a strong 2017 season in relief of Tannehill and want to return for the 2018 season.
  • Florio can’t see Dolphins HC Adam Gase turning his back on Tannehill until it’s obvious he can no longer play.

Steelers

Steelers GM Kevin Colbert believes that RB Le’Veon Bell is hurting himself by not reporting to training camp due to a contract dispute and that the team “can’t change” from their part of his contract .

My feeling is there’s nothing to be gained by a holdout,’’ Colbert said, via Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “The situation won’t change, it can’t really change from our part on a long-term deal.”

Colbert is worried that Bell will not be able to get in condition for a successful 2017 season by missing preseason activities.

So it hurts him not to be here. It hurts him because he’s not working with his teammates, he’s not getting the conditioning work that he’s going to need to have a great 2017 season. And he’s not working with his teammates to get acclimated to the offense — every year it’s different,” said Colbert.

  • Steelers HC Mike Tomlin said he has been in contact with Bell but has “no indication” when he will report to the team. (Ed Bouchette)