AFC Notes: Najee Harris, Mike Gesicki, Bengals, Ravens, Steelers


Bengals CB Mike Hilton said the defense has been seeing a lot of 12 personnel from the Bengals’ offense with TEs Mike Gesicki, Tanner Hudson and Drew Sample. Cincinnati is figuring out how to replace departed slot WR Tyler Boyd and involving the tight ends more could be a solution. 

“We saw a lot of 12 today,” Hilton said via Geoff Hobson of the team’s site. “I think they’ll mix it up a lot. Gesicki, that’s a big slot receiver. So you get that 11 look. We know he can play on the line, But when he makes his money, he’s split out getting those matchups. Obviously, he’s a big receiver. He’s not really a burner, but really savvy in his routes. His length is a problem. I feel he fits in perfectly.”

  • Bengals OL Ted Karras mentioned his extension through 2025 is essentially a two-year, $12 million contract: “Broke right before practice, so lot of congratulations. I’ve been inflating the numbers to everyone I’m telling.” (Paul Dehner Jr.)
  • Karras also pointed out he would like to end his career in Cincinnati. (Dehner Jr.)
  • Cincinnati HC Zac Taylor said DB Daxton Hill appears “very comfortable” as he switches from safety to outside CB. (Beb Baby)


Following the departure of LB Patrick Queen in free agency, Ravens LB Trenton Simpson will be stepping into a larger, more consistent role. Baltimore TE Isaiah Likely talked about how he feels Simpson is ready to thrive thanks to the improvements he’s made.

“He definitely looks bigger and stronger than last year and he’s definitely playing with a lot more [instincts],” Likely said, via Glenn Erby of the Ravens Wire“He’s not being as patient as he was last year. He’s playing with his athleticism, his intuition.”

“He’s showing that he’s ready for the opportunity. He’s not scared to do anything in the defense.”


Steelers HC Mike Tomlin would not get into detail when discussing why they declined RB Najee Harris fifth-year option, via 93.7 The Fan.

“There’s layers to it,” Tomlin said. “I’m not going to try to characterize it in simplicity, that would probably be inappropriate.” 

The option would have been worth $6.79 million fully guaranteed for the 2025 season. Harris has topped 1,000 yards rushing in each of his first three seasons but his career yards per carry is below 4.0 and he’s been an opinionated locker room presence at times. 

  • Harris declined an interview request and said he’ll talk at training camp. Harris hasn’t spoken to reporters since the end of last season. (Ray Fittipaldo)

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