AFC North Notes: Bengals, Browns, Ravens, Steelers


  • Per ESPN’s Ben Baby, Bengals HC Zac Taylor said WR Auden Tate was in the concussion protocol and also has a cervical strain. Tate had to be carried out of Sunday’s game on a backboard after a vicious hit. 


  •’s Scott Petrak expects Browns fourth-round rookie S Sheldrick Redwine to step into the starting lineup for Cleveland following the injuries and cuts at the position. 
  • Browns TE David Njoku is also expected to be activated from injured reserve this week. 
  • Browns LB Joe Schobert said his representatives had had extension talks with the team but he doesn’t expect anything imminent. (Petrak)
  • Browns HC Freddie Kitchens said DE Olivier Vernon is “very close” to returning from his knee injury. (Mary Kay Cabot)
  • Kitchens confirmed Njoku should return to practice Wednesday and the team would evaluate his status for Sunday’s game at that time. (Nate Ulrich)
  • Browns DE Myles Garrett will have his appeal for his suspension heard Wednesday morning by appeals officer James Thrash. (Adam Schefter)
  • Some in the Browns organization are hopeful that Garrett has a good case for his rest of season suspension to be reduced based on actions by Steelers QB Mason Rudolph that led up to the event, like twisting Garrett’s helmet and making contact with his groin area. (Jeremy Fowler)
  • Browns QB Baker Mayfield won his appeal and had a $12,500 fine for criticizing the officiating revoked from the NFL. (Jake Trotter)


While the Ravens loved what they saw out of QB Lamar Jackson in the leadup to the 2018 draft, Ravens GM Eric DeCosta and former GM Ozzie Newsome took a risk and decided to try to play the draft game. Baltimore traded down twice, going from No. 16 to No. 22 to No. 25, passing on Jackson three times in the process while taking TE Hayden Hurst, then trading back up to the 32nd pick in the first round to select him. DeCosta and Newsome felt they could add other impact players by trading down and still have a chance to snag Jackson. 

“We didn’t share what we were going to try and do with anybody,” DeCosta said via NBC Sports’ Peter King. “Drafts are strange like that. It’s just Ozzie and me at the end of the table, the only ones who really know. When you’re trying to make a decision as important as that, you try and keep it as quiet as you can. Because it’s not that you don’t want to share it with people, but the downside — which would be losing the player — is much greater than the upside of sharing the information with somebody that you care about.”

“We didn’t even interview Lamar at the combine because we didn’t want to be associated with him,” DeCosta added. “We didn’t want rumors about us and him to start. They didn’t. We were proud of that. So we pick him, and to hear him talk, and to hear his emotion and to see Lamar on TV with Deion Sanders, so happy, and to see his conviction, and to see his competitiveness. That’s a powerful thing. So, after the pick was announced, we hadn’t even had the chance to tell the scouts and coaches. And I think it’s probably the first time in my 24 years that you could hear cheering outside the draft room. You could hear the coaches and you could hear the scouts. That was a powerful moment for us.”

  • Ravens WR Chris Moore has missed the past two weeks with a broken thumb but hopes to be accustomed enough to his cast to be able to play next Monday night. (Jeff Zrebiec)


  • According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Steelers WR JuJu Smith-Schuster has a knee injury as well as a concussion from Thursday night’s game and is uncertain for this week. 
  • Steelers third-round rookie WR Diontae Johnson is also in the concussion protocol.
  • Steelers RB James Conner‘s AC joint injury is no worse than it was last week but he’s still questionable for this week. (Tom Pelissero)
  • The Steelers are appealing their $75,000 fine from the NFL for not listing QB Ben Roethlisberger on the injury report with an elbow injury. (Schefter)

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