AFC North Notes: Bengals, Browns, Ravens



Bengals GM Duke Tobin said he’s not worried about WR A.J. Green declining any time soon. Green turns 31 at the end of July and the Bengals are discussing an extension that will likely keep Green among the NFL’s highest-paid wide receivers. 

“Everybody is an individual, and the only thing I’ve ever seen of A.J. is his tremendous ability, and I haven’t seen that fall off,” Tobin said via the Athletic’s Paul Dehner Jr. “The guys that have the high-level skill set normally tend to last longer. They tend to heal quicker, and their careers tend to go a little longer because they are so physically gifted. He takes such good care of himself and it means so much to him, I’m not anticipating a dropoff.”

  • Tobin added the team will be looking to add another offensive lineman at some point in the coming weeks. (Geoff Hobson)


  • According to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport, Browns RB Duke Johnson will report to the team for training camp this week. 
  • Browns HC Freddie Kitchens reiterated the team is not looking to trade Johnson despite the runner’s request: “He’s going to have a significant role in our offense. He’s a good player. We’re not going to give away good players.” (Jake Trotter)
  • Kitchens added despite concerns about his role when RB Kareem Hunt returns from an eight-game suspension, Johnson still has a place on the team: “Don’t worry about the ball. We’ll find enough balls for them.” (Albert Breer)
  • Browns GM John Dorsey said he had a “very good conversation” with Johnson’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, on Tuesday. (Scott Petrak)
  • Dorsey also said he thinks the league agrees with him that an incident where Hunt was questioned by police outside a bar was a non-issue. (Petrak)
  • Dorsey mentioned he and Kitchens sat down with Hunt after the incident to reinforce that there were no guarantees with his situation. (Petrak)
  • Kitchens expects Browns WR Jarvis Landry to be ready to go at the start of training camp. (Nate Ulrich)
  • Dorsey admitted an extension for S Damarious Randall could take some time, though he’s had good conversations with his agent. Randall is playing out 2019 on the fifth-year option. (Mary Kay Cabot)
  • Kitchens said there’s no issues between him and OC Todd Monken despite some reports: “I’m very happy with the job Todd Monken is doing. I’m sure he’s happy with what I’m doing. We have the same mindset.” (Cabot)


Out in Arizona, the offense new HC Kliff Kingsbury is installing is already receiving buzz for the potential innovation it could bring from college to the NFL. However, across the country the Ravens are doing the same thing, designing an offense around QB Lamar Jackson to much less fanfare. 

“I expect this to change the way offensive football is played in the National Football League,” Ravens HC John Harbaugh said via the Athletic’s Dan Pompei. “Not that everybody is going to take on this style. But I expect us to create something that hasn’t been seen before. It’s elements and concepts that aren’t new to football. But the way we apply them and put them together and decide how much we use in the course of a game or a season — five step, three step, seven step, play action, RPOs, double options, triple options, downhill runs, all the audibles you can run, directional runs — all of that is part of it. I think we’re going to be in more elements than any team has ever been.”

  • Ravens DT Brandon Williams said teammate and fellow DT Michael Pierce passed his conditioning test, looked great and is “ready to go” per the Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec.
  • Pierce was held out of minicamp by the team for checking in overweight. 
  • Ravens first-round WR Marquise Brown (foot) passed his conditioning test but needs to pass physical in order to be cleared to practice. Jamison Hensley says it wouldn’t be surprising to see Brown on the field next week.
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