It’s sort of a ritual. When the oddsmakers out west deal with the Cincinnati Bengals, it gets interesting. But, you can always set your atomic clock by the outcome. Cincy is not favored to win either of the battles with their AFC North rival. Does that include the Monday Night Football affair? Yes, it’s like that. This is the year Cincinnati has to get the respect of Vegas back. More importantly, the Bengals have to recapture the respect of many fans again.
Once upon a time, Carl Lawson was viewed as a potential first-round talent. A lengthy injury history and concerns over his ability to be anything more than a pass-rush specialist forced him into the fourth round where the Cincinnati Bengals used the 116th overall pick to select the Auburn product.
Washington wide receiver John Ross has already signed his contract with the Cincinnati Bengals. The No. 9 overall pick in the 2017 draft was present for the team's recent rookie minicamp. Unfortunately, thanks to the labrum surgery he had just after setting the combine 40-yard-dash record at 4.22 seconds, Ross was relegated to the role of spectator.
AFC North Bytes
Baltimore wants to get stronger up front, but we’re not sure yet who will be playing where. The rebuilding job isn’t finished.
Of the four quarterbacks on the Cleveland Browns' roster, Cody Kessler has been pegged as the first-team pivot for organized team activities. Head coach Hue Jackson made the announcement Saturday during rookie minicamp. "They will all get reps. Obviously, Cody will start this out," Jackson said. "He deserves the opportunity to."
NFL rookie minicamps are hardly a barometer for future success. Players are learning the basics, such as the names of coaches, where to find the locker and how to execute a play call. But a few NFL-transferrable traits should stand out. And one thing -- OK, two things -- usually on display with Pittsburgh Steelers first-round pick T.J. Watt: His hands.
Jared Goff's rookie season may not have gone as planned, but if early indications from spring workouts are any indication, the 2016 No. 1 overall pick appears primed for improvement next season. Speaking to reporters Friday, Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur said he's been impressed by Goff's drive throughout the offseason workout program.
Welcome back to the NFL, Beast Mode! Marshawn Lynch signed with the Oakland Raiders at the end of April, and he recently rang in his hometown return with a big block party. Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green made an appearance, and Lynch even caught a pie to the face from Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters.
What makes larger-than-life NFL stars like Ndamukong Suh, Travis and Jason Kelce and Brandon Marshall tick? Their mothers know best.
The Jacksonville Jaguars acquired left tackle Branden Albert via trade from Miami last March, but according to Jags head coach Doug Marrone the two have yet to speak.