AFC Notes: Bengals, Browns, Baker Mayfield, Ravens


The last time Bengals sixth-round RB Chris Evans was at Ford Field, he was working as a volunteer with the NFL’s Crucial Catch program, unsure if he would ever play football again. But the former Michigan back’s long, winding journey brought him back to Ford Field where he scored his first NFL touchdown on a highlight-reel deep catch and a shoutout from QB Joe Burrow.

I want to mention Chris Evans,” Burrow said via The Athletic. “He’s just getting better and better every single week. You see what he can do in the pass game. He got one on one and really, really ran a great route and scored a touchdown for us. And then on the big throw to Ja’Marr in the second half, he picked up a safety pressure off the edge that was really unbelievable.

Bengals OC Brian Callahan said that the team placed an emphasis on Evans improving in pass protection leading into the season.

It’s the recognition and understanding of who’s coming. When are they coming? Where are they coming?” Callahan said. “And then there’s the eye discipline of, ‘OK, if my guy doesn’t come, when do I have to go scan? When do I have to give up space? What are all these looks? How do I understand what’s coming? What tells me that? There’s a whole bunch of things that only come from experience and watching tape that you can only gain from seeing and doing it over time.


  • ESPN’s Jake Trotter reports the Browns do not believe QB Baker Mayfield‘s shoulder injury is season-ending. 
  • The Athletic’s Jeff Howe reports Mayfield’s injury is a torn labrun in his left shoulder and playing is about pain management.
  • Mayfield said his injury is worse now than it was before Sunday’s game. He also added his labrum was completely torn in Week 2, not partially. (Nate Ulrich)
  • Mayfield mentioned he is the final decision on whether he plays: “It’s my decision. I get to say whether I play or not and that’s just how it is.” (92.3 The Fan)
  • Browns HC Kevin Stefanski said Mayfield was limited at practice Tuesday. (Ulrich)
  • Stefanski added although OTs Jedrick Wills and Jack Conklin aren’t practicing, they haven’t been ruled out for Thursday yet. (Ulrich)


The insertion of Ravens LB Josh Bynes into the lineup doesn’t seem like it would be a huge deal on face value. The veteran journeyman has bounced around several teams and is now in his third stint in Baltimore. But that experience, especially in the Ravens’ system, helped settle everyone down and keyed Baltimore’s best defensive performance of the season in a 34-6 win against the red-hot Chargers. 

“It just settled everybody into a good place where they could take a deep breath and just play football,” Ravens HC John Harbaugh said via the Athletic’s Jeff Zrebiec. “The tackling was better. The assignments were better. The fits were better. Everything was just more settled down.”

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