AFC North Notes: Bengals, Browns, Steelers

     

Bengals

  • According to Tyler Dragon of the Cincinnati Enquirer, Bengals CB William Jackson is scheduled for shoulder surgery on Thursday. 
  • The recovery timeframe is four to five months and Jackson is expected to be ready for training camp. 

Browns

  • According to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport, Browns chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta is now running Cleveland’s coaching search. His title remains the same, per Rapoport. 
  • Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson writes that Browns assistant GM Eliot Wolf has a good working relationship with DePodesta and is likely to remain with the organization unless a new GM insists on his removal. 
  • Robinson clarifies that Browns VP of player personnel Alonzo Highsmith has not been fired, however, he expects Highsmith to leave the organization, potentially to go back to the University of Miami. 
  • Robinson says Browns owner Jimmy Haslam made the decision to fire GM John Dorsey because he wanted football and analytics to be unified and not opposing in any way in the organization. 
  • Robinson adds that the consensus among people who have left the Browns from a variety of departments is that Haslam lacks patience, can’t be counted on to keep his word and relies too much on “side juries” to evaluate job performance.
  • The consensus is also if the Browns stick with DePodesta, their best chance at turning the organization around is sticking with his vision for a coach and general manager and having all three on the same page. 
  • According to Zac Jackson of The Athletic, Browns OC Todd Monken told opposing coaches prior to games that Cleveland is a “total mess” and that HC Freddie Kitchens‘ play-calling “generally steered away” from the gameplan they made during the week. 

Steelers

  • Per Joe Joe Rutter of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Steelers HC Mike Tomlin said he wouldn’t be shocked if there were changes to his coaching staff this offseason: “I understand change is part of the business. I wouldn’t be shocked if there is some movement and changes. That’s just part of this business, particularly in 2019.”
  • Steelers CB Artie Burns wasn’t cut during the preseason or traded during the regular season, but he doesn’t anticipate his tenure in Pittsburgh continuing in 2020: “I gotta get to another team and do what I got to do. For sure-for sure.” (Jacob Klinger)

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