AFC Notes: Bengals, Colts, Steelers


Bengals WR Tyler Boyd said the team has to create more yards after the catch this season.

“We have to do better after the catch,” Boyd said, via “Not to say we’re not doing well after the catch, but we need to stretch them. It’s time to break the tackle and go. We have to be playmakers. We do everything else well. Separate. Catch the ball. But we have to stretch it.”

Bengals WR Troy Walters believes Boyd is one of the more underrated players in the league and can be a weapon for QB Joe Burrow

“He’s underrated because his game is not a sexy splash, great speed where he just wows you. He just makes plays,” Walters said. “To me, he’s as dependable as it comes. He makes the tough catches in traffic. He comes to work every day, great attitude, positive energy, enthusiasm. Love for the game that really spreads across the whole team. Since I’ve been here (beginning of last season), I just don’t remember him missing anything. A walk-through, a practice, a training camp day. Anything.”

Boyd also mentioned that WR Tee Higgins has already taken a giant step forward this year.

“(Higgins) looks like a completely different player than last year,” Boyd said. “He came into camp injured and now he’s been through a season. Once you’ve been through a season, you kind of know you belong. He’s got that confidence. I see that in him now and that’s what we need.

“His catch radius,” says Boyd, running through his strengths. “His hands are pure, kind of like mine. He’s starting to develop into a good route runner. He’s striding out. He’s starting to become a whole different player in terms of getting better in each area. Catching, running routes and running after the catch. I think this year he’ll make a lot more plays after the catch. That will be the biggest improvement in his game.”


With DL Denico Autry moving on in free agency, DL Tyquan Lewis is looking for more opportunities, as he feels he can play a similar role to Autry on the Colts’ defense.

“He’s a tenacious player,” Lewis said of Autry, via Kevin Bowen of 107.5 The Fan. “He plays fierce and with a chip on his shoulder. I feel like I play the same way. We both have similarities. I feel like I can play inside and out. He’s a great player. I have nothing but the utmost respect for him. I look up to him a lot.”


Steelers’ T Zach Banner was injured early in 2020 and says that he can’t wait to be unleashed during the upcoming season.

“I am like a dog on a leash right now, right?” Banner said, via Mark Kaboly of The Athletic. “Keep pulling back, keep pulling back. One thing you are not going to tell me is to give effort and be there. It’s just not to be around the team but it is my development and the visual reps for myself because I am not perfect and we all need to get better every day. Pulling at the leash bugs me because I feel good. I am feeling better every day. I know the overall goal is for the season.”

Banner adds that the Steelers need to return to being known as the best offensive line in the league again.

“It’s not like creating a new environment,” Banner said. “It’s taking the stuff that’s been here and those experiences … a lot of people want to say bad things about us and that’s OK, but at the same time, a couple of years ago we were known as the best offensive line in the league. How do you take those things that they passed on and created it in your way.”

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