AFC Notes: Browns, Ravens, Steelers


Many wondered why Browns DE Myles Garrett did not appear joyous after their Thursday night win over the Jets. Garrett later revealed that he played the game with emotion following the death of his uncle on Christmas Day.

“I heard the next day and I just haven’t really known how to deal with it,” Garrett said, via Scott Petrak of “Just dealing with how it’s been affecting me physically and emotionally. I’m not one to really wear it on my face too often, but it’s taking its toll in different ways and just keeping my head to the sky and trying to stay focused. I know that’s what he want me to do and that’s what my mother want me to do. Still hard to believe. I really just don’t know how to put it into words. I’ve had headaches just daily because I don’t know how to handle it emotionally.”

“I think getting it off my chest is kind of like the best medicine,” Garrett continued. “I also didn’t want my teammates, if they saw me walking off the field, to feel like I wasn’t proud or happy of what we accomplished and achieved tonight. And it’s not indicative of how I truly feel, because I love this moment and how far we’ve come and how far we plan to go. This was more of a message to them that I’m so proud of this team and so appreciative of all the brothers that I have and I couldn’t do it without them and just continue to have my back and I’ll have theirs. When push comes to shove, I’ll have it just as much or even more.”

“It felt good,” Garrett added on the win. “Got a lot on my mind. But just trying to be in the moment, just trying to take in this blessing that it is to be in the playoffs with a great team, great group of guys and filled with men with passion and ambition. I just felt a little bit of lack of focus, like I was in a fog. Just trying to make sure that I was focused on the task at hand, but it was just difficult. And I’m not going to make excuses for anything that I did or not playing up to my standard or our standard, but just got to overcome. That’s what this year has been about, overcoming adversity and resilience, and everyone’s facing it in their own way. And now I’ve got to be able to do it my own, just as well as many others have.”

“If she needed me, I’d have been gone in a second,” Garrett added about his mother. “And football is great, I love this team, I love the Browns, but I only got one mom. I’m hopefully going to have many more games, many more years, but there was only one C.J. and there’s only one mom.”

  • Regarding the potential future of Browns QB Joe Flacco, CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones says Flacco wants to keep playing in 2024, and there’s a good chance it’s elsewhere. He’s only under contract for this season and Jones says Cleveland is “all in” on QB Deshaun Watson going forward.


Ravens OC Todd Monken was asked if he still has confidence in WR Rashod Bateman, who has missed time due to injury and had a lack of production over the course of this season.

“You really can see with each day [and] each week [Rashod Bateman] gaining more and more confidence,” Monken replied, via “His ability to practice [after] basically almost being out a year. Missing the offseason is a better way of putting it or a lot of [training] camp. You can see his confidence beginning to grow, and he’s playing faster. You can see that, and he has it in him. It’s been better every week, and he’s been able to practice every week. That’s a big part of a player’s development when you have a skillset that he has. He loves football. He likes to practice, so it’s just a matter of staying healthy, and that development will continue to come.”

  • Ravens HC John Harbaugh over the Week 17 win over the Ravens to clinch the AFC North: “I’m not sure I’ve seen a more impressive performance.” (Jeff Zrebiec)


  • Steelers WR George Pickens was fined $16,391 for unsportsmanlike conduct.

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