AFC Notes: Bengals, Browns, Colts


Bengals HC Marvin Lewis explained that former first-round WR John Ross wasn’t in the doghouse last year and was instead working to get healthy.

“He wasn’t in my doghouse. I don’t have a doghouse,” Lewis said, via “I think he’s all the ability we wanted. That’s why we drafted him. He had to get fixed. We knew he was injured going in and he got nicked up a couple of times in his lower legs and the other shoulder was bothering him. He’s all fixed now.


  • Scott Petrak of says that finding a “playmaker” to be a priority for the Browns in the draft, but he doesn’t see them using either their No. 1 or No. 4 overall picks on one. Instead, Patrick says Cleveland is more likely to take a receiver at No. 33 overall or trade back in the first round to get one.
  • As for the running back position, Petrak could see Cleveland drafting one with their No. 35 or No. 64 overall picks.
  • According to Petrak, the Browns trading their No. 4 overall is “definitely in play” but he can’t see them moving back more than a “few spots.
  • If Cleveland does stay put at No. 4, Petrak mentions Alabama DB Minkah Fitzpatrick and Ohio State CB Denzel Ward as played to keep an eye on.
  • Petrack doesn’t rule out the Browns taking two quarterbacks in this year’s draft second possibly coming in the mid-to-late rounds. Should Cleveland go this route, Petrack believes they should waive Kevin Hogan. Otherwise, they could keep Hogan around as their No. 4 quarterback behind Tyrod Taylor, Drew Stanton, and whoever they take at No. 1 overall.


Colts new HC Frank Reich does not believe the team is in a rebuilding phase and he plans to put his entire focus on winning games right out of the gate.

I get that there’s certain positions in the organization where there are different perspectives,” Reich said, Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star. “And I think it’s mature to be able to say something can be both/and. But as a coach, I’m not both/and. I’m not being paid to be both/and. Other guys are being paid to see the rebuilding and have the patience. I’m not being paid for that. There’s not one ounce of me being patient. There’s not one ounce of me that thinks we are in a rebuilding project.”

Meanwhile, Colts GM Chris Ballard agreed that they’re trying to games right now, but explained that their focus remains to build through the draft and add depth at other positions as needed.

Are we trying to win? Damn right!” Ballard said. “Yeah, we’re trying to win. But who says you can’t do it with young players?

“Do we expect to just draft and go out and win the Super Bowl every year?” Ballard said. “No. But is that our goal? You’re damn right it is. But we just want to build it the right way.

Looking for the latest NFL Insider News & Rumors?

Be sure to follow NFL Trade Rumors on TWITTER and FACEBOOK for breaking NFL News and Rumors for all 32 teams!