AFC Notes: Browns, Ravens, Steelers


  • Browns’ new DE Takk McKinley said he is hopeful to learn from the mistakes he made since entering the NFL: “Everything happens for a reason, life is a roller coaster, for me, the biggest thing is to learn from my mistakes, I’m not perfect, I’ve made a lot of mistakes, but if I want to learn from it, don’t make same mistake twice.” (Nate Ulrich)
  • McKinley mentioned that signing with Cleveland was an “easy decision” after they tried multiple times to claim him off waivers: “It was an easy decision for me. They tried to pick me up three times off waivers and tried to trade for me. Fifth time’s the charm.” (Scott Petrak)
  • Browns’ new S John Johnson III said he turned down “significantly” more money to sign with Cleveland: “I felt it was the opportunity of a lifetime. It’s rare.” (Mary Kay Cabot)


  • Ravens’ recently signed G Kevin Zeitler said his decision came down to Baltimore being the “best fit” for him while adding he has obvious experience in the AFC North during previous stops with the Bengals and Browns: “It really came down to the Ravens being the best fit, but it didn’t really hurt that they play in the AFC North.” (Jeff Zrebiec)
  • Josina Anderson reports that there is “some caution” about whether the Ravens have enough cap space to sign WR Kenny Golladay at his perceived price of $18.5 million per year. Anderson mentions that the Giants “felt good” about their recent visit with Golladay.
  • Ravens DE Derek Wolfe, who re-signed to a three-year, $12 million deal, said he returned to the organization because they are focused on winning: “I feel at home there. It’s the kind of place you want to be. They’re all about winning.” (Jeff Zrebiec)
  • Wolfe admitted he was unsure how this offseason would play out given the decreased salary cap and assumed teams would sign younger players: “I wasn’t sure I was going to play football again.” (Jamison Hensley)


  • According to Mike Garafolo, the Steelers added another $500,000 to JuJu Smith-Schuster‘s final offer to get the deal done, which increased his salary from $7.5 million to $8 million. 
  • ESPN’s Brooke Pryor notes that Steelers CBs Cam Sutton and Justin Layne figure to be internal options to replace CB Steve Nelson. However, she believes cornerback is now a “significant position of need to address” in free agency or the draft.
  • According to Gerry Dulac, the Steelers had to decide between keeping Joe Haden or Nelson. In the end, cutting Haden would have provided $1 million less in available cap space.  
  • The Steelers signed DL Chris Wormley to a two-year contract worth $4.5M that includes a $1.2M signing bonus and will have base salaries of $1M and $2.3M. (Aaron Wilson)
  • The Steelers signed OT Zach Banner to a two-year, $9.5M contract that includes a $3.25M signing bonus and base salaries of $1.25M and $5M. (Aaron Wilson)

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