AFC Notes: Bengals, Browns, Ravens


Bengals CB Mike Hilton mentioned that there has been chatter in the locker room between players who think that franchise-tagged S Jessie Bates deserves to be signed to a long-term deal by Cincinnati.  

“Yeah, we’ve been talking all offseason,” Hilton said, via Kelsey Conway of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “Everybody in that locker room wants Jessie to get what he deserves. We know as a team, that he’s a cornerstone piece for this franchise. On my end, I’m going to do what I can to keep pushing and keep putting it out there for him to sign long-term. If it happens, great. But also, everybody knows the business side of the NFL. And nobody would be upset or pissed at him if he didn’t show up or he ended up going somewhere else. It’s just part of the game. But he knows that everybody in this locker room wants him here.”

  • According to the Athletic’s Greg Auman, former Florida G Stewart Reese will attend the Bengals rookie minicamp on a tryout basis.


  • USA Today’s Jori Epstein reports the Browns are hiring Eagles vice president of football operations Catherine Raiche to its front office and will have an “assistant GM-like” role. 
  • Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer notes the Browns are confident they will be able to re-sign DE Jadeveon Clowney, however, if a team closer to where he grew up in South Carolina, like the Panthers, showed real interest, they could lose him. 


  • Ravens director of player personnel Joe Hortiz on the team drafting P Jordan Stout: “We are at the Senior Bowl with Ozzie [Newsome] before practice and he is like, ‘He might be the best player on the field.’ He is just banging balls. Just jumps off his foot” (Jamison Hensley)
  • Hortiz was asked to compare LB David Ojabo to last year’s first-round pick LB Odafe Oweh: “The similarity is they are both fast, twitchy, athletic players. I’d say coming out, Ojabo is probably a little bit cleaner as a bender edge rusher, where Oweh’s game was burst and power.” (Hensley)
  • Hortiz said he expects DT Travis Jones to have more burst in the NFL, considering he won’ play every down as he did in college: “That gives you more stamina in the game, helps you stay fresher. It’ll help him be even more impactful on the play to play basis.” (Hensley)
  • Hortiz called first-round S Kyle Hamilton a “chess piece” for their defense: “You see that and you’re fired up that you get a chance to take him at 14, that he fell to you. That’s why you just think he’s going to be gone because he’s a playmaker at multiple different levels of the defense.” (Hensley)

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