AFC North Notes: Bengals, Browns, Ravens, Steelers

     

Bengals

After losing first-round LT Jonah Williams in OTA’s and star WR A.J. Green in camp to injuries, the Bengals made sure RB Joe Mixon was safe from the injury bug. Mixon got only three snaps in the preseason as HC Zac Taylor basically wrapped him in bubble wrap to preserve him for the regular season. 

“Zac gave me basically the quarterback treatment over the preseason. It’s been great. Trust me, I’m ready to go,” Mixon said via Tyler Dragon of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

  • Per Dragon, Bengals OT Cordy Glenn remains in the concussion protocol from an injury initially suffered Week 2 of the preseason. Taylor says he’s “day-to-day.”

Browns

  • According to ESPN’s Tony Grossi, there was little risk in the Browns cutting projected starting LT Greg Robinson for 24 hours in order to get sixth-round OL Drew Forbes on injured reserve with eligibility to return. 
  • Grossi said the Browns have a strong relationship with Robinson and his agent Drew Rosenhaus to facilitate this type of procedural move, which was used by several other teams this weekend, while no other team would likely have matched Robinson’s $7 million salary. 
  • Grossi expects RBs Dontrell Hilliard and D’Ernest Johnson to be the Browns’ kickoff returners, while WR Antonio Callaway will step in on punts when he returns from his four-game suspension.

Ravens

Playing running back in the NFL is a young man’s game. While Ravens RB Mark Ingram is only 29, that makes him the oldest starting running back in the NFL right now. The veteran, who spent the past eight years of his career with the Saints before signing in Baltimore in free agency this year, says he feels like his best is yet to come.

“People say what they want. I don’t feel like you can put an age on somebody,” Ingram said via ESPN’s Jamison Hensley.Adrian Peterson is 34. He just ran for 1,200 [yards]. So say what you want, I think it’s up to each person. I feel like my best football is still ahead of me.”

Steelers

While Steelers DT Javon Hargrave won’t get a new contract before the season, HC Mike Tomlin said he likes how Hargrave has continued to improve every season. The 2016 third-rounder out of South Carolina State has put himself in position to cash in with a big 2019, either in Pittsburgh or elsewhere. 

“I like how he continues to add to his portfolio,” Tomlin said via Gerry Dulac. “A nose guard is like Blockbuster Video — he better diversify. A nose doesn’t get an opportunity to play much so he better reinvent himself as a subpackage rusher. He has done that.”

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