AFC Notes: Bengals, Browns, Steelers

     

Bengals

  • The Athletic’s Paul Dehner Jr. writes it’s worth watching when Bengals WR A.J. Green will sign his franchise tag and report to the team. 
  • Green could sign and report by the start of training camp, or given what happened last year when he got hurt in the opening practice he could sit out the majority of camp and report for Week 1. 

Browns

Regarding Browns DE Myles Garrett‘s five-year, $125 million extension, Browns’ executive Andrew Berry wrote in a statement that their organization is committed to retaining young players for their “present and future core.” 

One of our fundamental organizational beliefs is identifying young players on our roster and proactively retaining them as part of our present and future core. We go through great lengths to select players whose make-up and performance embody the characteristics we are looking for within our team. Today, we’re delighted that Myles Garrett will be a Cleveland Brown for many years to come,” said Berry, via Andrew Gribble of the team’s official site. “Myles’ rare physical gifts in conjunction with his work ethic, intellect and humility have been the catalysts behind an auspicious start to his young career. Despite his early individual successes, Myles maintains the same drive toward greatness that he displayed as a 22-year old rookie. We firmly believe that this intense focus means the best is yet to come.”

Garrett also offered his gratitude to the Cleveland Browns and the fanbase. 

“In 2017, the Cleveland Browns bet on me,” Garrett said. “This city quickly became my home and these people quickly became my family. I’m eternally grateful for this opportunity, the support of my friends and family, the organization, my teammates, the fans—I could go on forever, but even that wouldn’t be enough time to express my gratitude. I’ll just say this: Keep betting on me, Cleveland, because I won’t let you down. Now, let’s get to work.”

As for Garrett’s confrontation with the Steelers in 2019, Berry praised the accountability of the defensive end and feels the moment shouldn’t define Garrett. 

“It would be remiss of me not to address the fact that we are choosing to do this after a season during which Myles was suspended,” Berry said. “Myles has been accountable for his mistake and we view the incident as well out of character. We don’t believe one moment should define him based on how he has handled himself prior to and in the months after last year’s incident. We are excited to ensure that Myles will stay in Cleveland for the foreseeable future.”

Browns HC Kevin Stefanski felt it was “really important” for the organization to finalize a long-term extension for Garrett

“I think it’s really important for us as an organization to cement Myles’ status here for a really long time,” Stefanski said. “He was drafted No. 1 overall, and you’ve seen over the years what an extremely bright future this young player has. I think it was a prudent decision on Andrew’s part and Myles’ part to keep Myles here for many productive seasons. Myles’ skillset, I think, is still scratching the surface. He’s young, and I can’t wait to get our hands on him and put him in this scheme and let him loose. He’s as disruptive as they come. He’s big, long, fast, quick and has a motor. He checks all the boxes. I think he fits so perfectly into what we want to be schematically in terms of getting off the football and being in attack mode for 60 minutes.”

Steelers

  • The Athletic’s Mark Kaboly writes the Steelers see RB Benny Snell as a clone of starting RB James Conner, which means he likely won’t see much work while Conner is healthy but could step into the feature role if Conner is injured. 
  • Kaboly mentions the Steelers’ selection of RB Anthony McFarland in the fourth round likely means RB Kerrith Whyte has little chance of making the final roster. 
  • Kaboly notes McFarland will compete with Steelers RB Jaylen Samuels for a role in the offense as a subpackage player. 
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