AFC Notes: Bengals, Raiders, Josh Jacobs, Texans


Bengals S Daxton Hill said he is entering next season with a “different mentality” as he looks to earn the first-team role at safety. 

“It starts whenever I start back up this offseason training,” Hill said, via Laurel Pfahler of the Dayton Daily News. “Just coming with a different mentality, knowing what didn’t happen this year and just having a chip on my shoulder coming up in this season.”

When reflecting on what he learned this year, Hill responded that he went through a lot of ups and downs but thinks it was a “great season” as a rookie. 

“Just the ups and downs, been through a lot in terms of knowing my role,” Hill said. “It was a great season looking back in hindsight. There’s something I always can improve on so I just take it as a way to just reflect and learn from what I did this year.”

Hill notably played multiple roles on defense last season. He believes that he’ll be able to gain more confidence by honing in on one position or a specific job. 

“Your confidence builds as you get more reps and you hone in one position or at least knowing the specific job you’re doing,” Hill said.


Raiders RB Josh Jacobs had a career year, leading the NFL in rushing after the team declined his fifth-year option last offseason. So the hard part is done, and one way or another Jacobs is going to get paid this offseason. 

“I feel like I’m in the driver’s seat, you know what I’m saying?” Jacobs said via the Athletic’s Tashan Reed. “I control the ship. However it goes, that’s how it’s going to go, you know what I’m saying? So, I’m not too much worried about it, but it’s definitely got to make sense.”

Jacobs says he wants to be back with the Raiders but not to the point where he’s willing to take a major discount. 

“This is where I want to be,” Jacobs said. “I feel like I’ve left my mark on this organization. With the guys in the locker room — obviously, it’s going to be shaken up next year, but I feel like this is home. For me, this is where I want to be, but I’m not going to discredit myself trying to be here, either. So, it’s just got to make sense.”

The Raiders can franchise tag Jacobs in lieu of an extension for a sum of $10.9 million guaranteed, which is a powerful negotiating trump card. The downside of that is they’d risk alienating Jacobs. 

“Ooh, hero turned villain,” he said when asked what his reaction would be if he was tagged. “Hero turned villain, man.”


Texans GM Nick Caserio gave an update on the state of the team following the hiring of HC DeMeco Ryans.

“There’s been a lot of work that we’ve put in over the last few years, and, quite frankly, there’s been some things that haven’t gone the way we would have hoped, but we’re excited about the opportunity in front of us,” Caserio said, via “You have to start somewhere. You have to put your feet on the ground somewhere, and here’s where we are today. We have our feet on the ground.”

“We can’t wait to get started,” Caserio continued. “We have a lot of work in front of us, but if we get the right people with the right process in place and then build it day-by-day, okay, week-by-week, month-by-month, that’s how you build sustainable success. It doesn’t happen overnight. I know everybody kind of sometimes gets caught up in kind of the quick fix. You have got to have purposeful intent action and do it consistently day after day.”

“Honestly, it’s about doing simple things better,” Caserio added on how the team can improve. “If you do simple well, okay, it’s like we talked about offensively, like philosophically. DeMeco has talked about it’s simple, but you create the illusion of complexity, right? So do something really well, kind of create the illusion of complexity. Whether it’s your formation is a certain way, your motion is a certain way, or you cause the defender’s eyes to go a certain way. Figure out those things that we can do in the simple things and make sure our players understand that. And if you do it consistently over time, that’s how you’re going to build something that you can actually move forward with and have sustainable success. It doesn’t happen overnight.”

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