AFC Notes: Bengals, Browns, Steelers

     

Bengals

Bengals’ first-round WR Ja’Marr Chase said his goal is to “break every record” for the organization. 

“I’m going to break every record they’ve got. That’s my goal right there. I’m telling you right now,” said Chase, via Geoff Hobson of the team’s official site. “I don’t know how I’m going to do it, but it’s going to get done.”

Chase mentioned that Joe Burrow told him to “get your bags packed” prior to the Bengals announcing him as their pick. 

“Get your bags packed,” Chase said. “So that means I was going to be the pick. I didn’t know if that was a hint or what. He sent me that text this morning and I said, ‘OK, I’m ready bro.”

Chase believes he will have an easy transition to the Browns with Burrow as his quarterback. 

“He definitely taught me some things when I was at LSU. I think this will be easy,” Chase says. “I like the way Joe carries himself. He’s always calm, very collected and he’s not afraid to tell you something. That’s something I love from my quarterback. Me and him are always on the same page, communicating about the defense and the offense. . I’m always willing to learn and have an open ear when Joe’s talking to me.”

Browns

  • Josina Anderson reports that the Browns felt CB Greg Newsome would bring the following traits to Cleveland: “Size, length, speed and ultra-competitive. Provides great depth (at the position).”
  • Browns’ GM Andrew Berry said that drafting Newsome was not a reflection of the injury to CB Greedy Williams. (Nate Ulrich)
  • Newsome said he was expecting to go higher in the draft but ultimately had a great first night in the city of Cleveland. (Scott Petrak)

Steelers

Regarding the Steelers drafting Alabama RB Najee Harris, HC Mike Tomlin said they intend to fix their rushing attack this season. 

“You know, it’s our intentions to turn around the run game,” Tomlin said, via Mark Kaboly of The Athletic. “Whether or not our work is complete as we sit here tonight in that regard or not, whether it’s the acquisition of players, the development of schematics, the finding of cohesion within our staff, all of that is irrelevant in terms of completeness tonight. Our intentions are to improve our running game.”

Tomlin said he doesn’t agree with the theory of running backs being devalued as draft prospects. 

“You know, we don’t subscribe to the theory that you mentioned,” Tomlin said. “He was a player that we really valued. We were ecstatic that he was there, and we took him and we took him pretty quickly with little to no dialogue. We’re extremely happy with where we are this evening.”

Harris acknowledged that running backs are typically devalued in current draft classes. 

“Yeah, it was extremely frustrating, especially having this draft party and inviting everybody out and not knowing what’s going to happen,” Harris said. “But yeah, I don’t like it. I don’t agree with it, but I’m not making the decisions. But running backs are devalued. I can give numerous reasons why we shouldn’t be devalued, but just knowing that, hey, you’re better than all these guys, it’s just that you play running back.”

Steelers GM Kevin Colbert attributed “wear and tear” to devaluing college running backs, but viewed Harris’ durability at Alabama as a positive. 

“Sometimes you look at that and say, ‘well, the wear and tear, he’s already got this many carries,’ but I always look at it the other way,” Colbert said. “He was a durable player, again, in an NFL-type running offense in what is one of the toughest leagues in college football. I view it as a positive because he was very durable for Alabama.”

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