AFC Notes: Bengals, Browns, Ravens


  • The Athletic’s Paul Dehner Jr. and Jay Morrison don’t believe that the Bengals are serious contenders to take Florida TE Kyle Pitts with the No. 5 pick. 
  • The two do think the Bengals will draft a tight end, noting they’ve done so every other season since 2013 and are due this year. They think a mid or late-round pick is more likely, however. 
  • Some options they list include Georgia’s Tre McKitty, Virginia’s Tony Poljan, Boston College’s Hunter Long, Kansas State’s Briley Moore and TCU’s Pro Wells
  • North Carolina WR Dazz Newsome has met with virtually every team so far except for the Cowboys, Texans, Falcons and Bengals. (Justin Melo


Browns DT Andrew Billings said he had a difficult time adjusting to not playing last season after opting out of 2020 due to COVID-19. 

“In the beginning, it was kind of hard to watch,” Billings said, via Anthony Poisal of the team’s official website. “But after a while, you just miss it, so I’d go to NFL Game Pass and just watch and study the plays and see what we were doing.”

Billings mentioned that the Browns would progressively keep in touch with him last season while on the opt-out list. 

“It was a long process and it took some time to figure out, but once I did, it was all good,” Billings said. “They put a team together to reach out to COVID opt-out players, and that was really nice.”

After taking a year off, Billings explained that he “noticed the difference” in terms of his body and he’s now focused on earning his spot on the Browns’ roster. 

“I noticed the difference in not being beaten on, but I also noticed the difference of not taking any snaps, too,” Billings said. “It’s a bit of a give-and-take, but I’m planning on getting as many reps as possible to get ready for this season.”

“I wanted to be out there,” Billings said. “I wanted to be out there in practice. I wanted to be in those meetings. I wanted to be in those games. Coming into next year, it’s even more important for me to get out there and work harder because there’s a team out there that I want to be a part of, so I have to find my place.”


  • The NFLPA released its calculations for the performance-based pay benefit that was eliminated in 2020 but will still be paid by teams. Each team split $8.5 million between its players and payments are deferred to 2024. 
  • The top Ravens player was S DeShon Elliott ($557,477).
  • Ravens WR Sammy Watkins‘ one-year, $5 million deal is fully guaranteed, including a  $1.25 million base salary and a $3.75 million signing bonus (Aaron Wilson)

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