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NFL Notes: Bengals, Dolphins, Jaguars, Lions

Bengals

The Bengals somewhat surprisingly picked up CB Darqueze Dennard‘s fifth-year option, despite the fact that he has yet to play a full season for them.

Dennard explained that the Bengals’ decision to so is a “confidence boost” for him moving forward.

Definitely a confidence boost,” Dennard said, via Paul Dehner Jr of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “Just thankful for the organization, the Brown family and coaching staff still believing in me. Knowing I can play this game. I’m really grateful. The last three years I haven’t played healthy. Unfortunate injury situations you can’t prepare for. For them to still believe in me and know the capability that I have and flashes I showed here and there means a lot.

Dolphins

  • Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald writes that the Dolphins could still use help at center and at running back before the start of training camp.
  • In regards to the center position, Salguero suggests signing long-time Jets C Nick Mangold, given that Mike Pouncey is working his way back from another hip surgery.
  • As for running back, they could use some depth behind starter Jay Ajayi.

Jaguars

Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell explained their thinking in regards to the decision to pick up QB Blake Bortles‘ fifth-year options, which would cost them $19 million for the 2018 season.

I think that slots him as the 16th highest quarterback next year, right around the median,” Caldwell told Pro Football Talk. “If he was to get the franchise tender that puts him at the third or fourth or fifth ranked quarterback depending on who gets new deals next year.

“We look at two-year values on our contracts,” Caldwell added. “I think this year he’s scheduled to make about $3.2 million in cash, and then the $19 million next year is just a little over $22 million, it’s a two-year, $11 million average on what is considered a new deal, and that puts him not in the Top 16 of quarterbacks.

Lions

  • Neil Stratton reports that Lions senior personnel executive Brian Xanders has left the team after four years. According to Stratton, it’s possible Xanders could quickly find a new opportunity with another team.
  • Dave Birkett reports that the Lions are bringing in Sioux Falls QB Luke Papilion for a tryout during their rookie minicamp next week. Papilion a dual-threat quarterback who totaled over 12,000 yards during his stint at Division II Sioux Falls.