AFC Notes: Trey Hendrickson, Cameron Heyward, Bengals, Ravens, Steelers


Bengals’ veteran DE Trey Hendrickson feels “faster and stronger” this offseason after training hard ahead of minicamp. 

“I’m faster and stronger than I was last year and I’m excited about it,” Hendrickson said, via Geoff Hobson of the team’s site. “Every player should feel like he’s in the best shape of his life at this point in the season. You should try something different here and there. I think I ran faster and worked out harder. I know it sounds cliché. But I want it. I want to win.”

Hendrickson points out last season was the first time in his career his team didn’t reach the playoffs.

“It’s the first time in my career I was ever out of the playoffs. Never mind the first time not winning a division title,” Hendrickson said. “That was tough. We were a couple of plays away from being in the playoffs. A couple of plays away from punching our ticket to the Super Bowl. The first thing you have to do is get in the dance. Once you’re there, you’ve got a shot.”

Although Hendrickson feels he’s owed a more lucrative contract, he understands that winning requires teams to have cap flexibility.

“This is where separating business and the team is difficult. At what point am I contradicting what I want?” Hendrickson said. “Long-term, winning games, all those things are what I want to do here in Cincinnati and removing myself from the team doesn’t help the team.”


Ravens GM Eric DeCosta was asked his thoughts on why he felt fourth-round CB T.J. Tampa fell so far in the draft after being projected as a Day 2 pick.

I can’t speak to other teams,” DeCosta said, via Ravens Wire. “We really liked [T.J. Tampa], and honestly, we’ve doubled up on positions before – probably four or five times – and it’s worked out well for us. Honestly, we would have taken him a lot higher had we not taken Nate [Wiggins in the first round], I would have to say. So, he didn’t necessarily have a great 40 [-yard dash] time. He had a Big 12 Pro Day, and he did not run at the Combine, so that might have hurt him a little bit, but for us, we see the length, we see the size, we see the leaping ability [and] his ability to play the football. He’s a tough guy. He tackles well. We’re excited. We think he’s going to have a chip on his shoulder and play well.


Steelers longtime DT Cameron Heyward voiced what it will take to get Pittsburgh back to contending for Super Bowls after early playoff exits.

“I think the playoff hump is just one, you got to remain healthy,” Heyward said, via Allison Koehler of the Steelers Wire. “Then I think two, you got to hit your stride at the right time and it’s got to be a good balance of both offense, defense and special teams.”

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