AFC North Notes: Bengals, Ravens, Steelers

     

Bengals

  • According to the Athletic’s Paul Dehner Jr., there are no plans by the Bengals to trade RB Giovani Bernard, and if anything Cincinnati could sign the runner to an extension. 
  • Bernard is 28 and entering the final year of his contract. Dehner says he’s shown enough value on the field and as a leader that the team could choose to do the rare third contract for a running back. 
  • However, he adds the development of sixth-round RBs Trayveon Williams and Rodney Anderson will likely play a major factor in how the Bengals approach Bernard. 
  • Dehner mentions S Jessie Bates and third-round LB Germaine Pratt as standouts so far in camp, while former third-round LB Malik Jefferson has been quiet. 
  • The Bengals plan to clear Anderson to practice as soon as this week and will not start him on the PUP list. (Jay Morrison)

Ravens

  • According to the Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec, the Ravens tried to trade into the top five back in 2016 to draft CB Jalen Ramsey, offering the Cowboys a fourth-round pick to swap the No. 4 for the No. 6 overall pick. 
  • The Cowboys wanted a third-round pick instead, and ultimately stayed put and took RB Ezekiel Elliott. The Ravens took OT Ronnie Stanley at No. 6. 
  • Zrebiec notes G Jermaine Eluemunor continues to struggle at the starting left guard spot. He had two false starts to begin joint practices with the Jaguars Monday after initially starting camp on the PUP because of conditioning. 
  • Zrebiec reports LB Kenny Young is now firmly behind 2018 UDFA Chris Board for a starting linebacker position. 
  • While it seemed likely the Ravens would keep one rookie undrafted free agent at linebacker this year, Zrebiec says this year’s group of Otaro Alaka, E.J. Ejiya, and Silas Stewart are all currently on the wrong side of the bubble — though Alaka still could change minds with a strong preseason.
  • 2018 fourth-round WR Jaleel Scott has been impressive in his second year and could grab one of the final roster spots at wide receiver. (Zrebiec)
  • Zrebiec expects first-round WR Marquise Brown to play at some point this preseason. Brown has been limited to individual drill since he was activated from the NFI list. He suffered a Lisfranc injury late last year. 
  • Zrebiec notes FB Patrick Ricard seems to have put himself back in contention for a roster spot. 
  • Zrebiec mentions WR Antoine Wesley, OL Patrick Mekari and DL Gerald Willis as the top undrafted free agent options to make the team this year. 

Steelers

  • According to the Athletic’s Mark Kaboly, Steelers OT Matt Feiler has had the best camp of anyone on the roster, in his opinion, and has clearly won the starting right tackle spot. 
  • The other standout Kaboly has seen is LB Ola Adeniyi who should work into the regular-season rotation. 
  • Kaboly says the Steelers will likely try to reduce LB Vince Williams role to the base defense or inside pass rusher while giving more coverage responsibility to first-round LB Devin Bush and free-agent addition LB Mark Barron.
  • Kaboly mentions third-round rookie WR Diontae Johnson has flashed but likely needs a year of maturing and strength work to really make an impact. Kaboly also says WR Diontae Spencer is a strong candidate for the practice squad and maybe the active roster. 
  • Kaboly has noticed the Steelers giving CB Artie Burns a large number of reps to try and get the former first-round pick on track. Meanwhile, CB Cameron Sutton has looked good and could win the nickel corner spot. 
  • The Steelers have been lining RB Jaylen Samuels up all over the formation as a jack-of-all-trades weapon in addition to backup running back. 
  • Per Kaboly, Josh Dobbs is still ahead of Mason Rudolph for the Steelers backup quarterback position. 
  • Kaboly says K Chris Boswell has made 22-23 kicks in camp so far and would need to implode during the preseason to not make the roster. 
  • The Steelers are working on a reported three-year extension for CB Joe Haden, which will lower his current $11.9 million cap hit. (Gerry Dulac)
  • DT Javon Hargrave is also in line for an extension.