News from the AFC North

 

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor AFC North and NFC South

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8 

Week two of the NFL Preseason has gone and plenty of questions have been left unanswered for the teams in the AFC North.

All four teams (Ravens, Bengals, Browns and Steelers) seem to have locked on to their starting quarterback. It’s going to be the position battles that most intrigue fans during training camp and the preseason. At last wide receiver Antonio Brown and his helmet issues are no longer a problem in this division! Good luck with that, Oakland!

But there were two really heartbreaking losses this week in the death’s of former Bengals running back Cedric Benson and Steelers wide receivers coach Darryl Drake.

Let’s see what’s been going on in the North….

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AFC North: preseason week one

 

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor AFC North & NFC South

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8  

It’s hard to believe Week 1 of the NFL Preseason is already in the books.

This season, I’ll be covering the AFC North:  Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, and Pittsburgh Steelers.

For the past few years, this division has easily been dominated by the Steelers and Ravens. This season may bring quite a few surprises!

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What to do with a disgruntled NFL player?

Lisa Johnson
Senior NFL Reporter

By Lisa Johnson //@LJ1303

With the dog days of summer upon us, and very little news coming out of the NFL, there is one story I’ve been following. Running back Duke Johnson wants out of Cleveland.

During the off-season, Johnson asked the Cleveland Browns to trade him. He was feeling like the Browns just didn’t want him anymore. Hearing that the Browns had put Johnson on the trading block before the running back had even asked about a trade was sort of a hint. Johnson has become so adamant about wanting out of Cleveland that he fired his agent Kristin Campbell and hired Super-agent Drew Rosenhaus.

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Big changes coming for NFL Network

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8

As you know, the NFL Network is owned by the NFL.

Apparently, part of their yearly production budget is being used for the celebration of the NFL’s 100th season.

This has resulted in five shows being cut from the fall lineup. While there are concerns amongst the on-air talent regarding contract talks and possible salary reductions, at least one newly hired personality will be incredibly popular in the Cleveland market.

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AFC North: Which team did the best in the draft?

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8

The 2019 NFL Draft has come and gone.

Since the Cleveland Browns are “my” team, I thought I’d try to take an objective look at the AFC North division overall and see who did the most to improve their roster. I said I’d TRY to be objective, but no promises…

When it comes to numbers, the division kind of stair-stepped up: Cleveland had 7, Baltimore had 8, Pittsburgh had 9 and Cincinnati chose a whopping 10 players.

As to positions, Defense has 17, Offense had 16 and there was one kicker taken. Yes, you read that right… my Browns took a kicker in the 5th round… we’ll talk more about that later…

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The Eight “Rookie” Head Coaches of 2019

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor

 

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8

This season an unprecedented eight NFL teams will have new head coaches. And for six of these coaches, it will be their first time running the whole show.

Bruce Arians has stepped out of the booth and back onto the field in Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers have floundered recently and Jameis Winston hasn’t grown or flourished the way we expected him to when he was drafted in 2015. Perhaps promoting former NFL QB turned offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich will be the first step in turning Winston around.

But the seven other coaches have their work cut out for them. Let’s take a look at these “rookies” and, maybe the biggest key to their success, who will be under center as they take the field.

This week’s Blitzed Insider’s featured article!

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Browns get key piece in Odell Beckham Jr.

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8 

As a fan of the Cleveland Browns, I am often on the wrong end of trades or free agent signings.

But things have started to change for this team, and for once they were on the winning side of a deal!

While I have some sympathy for New York Giants fans, it’s every fan for themselves in the NFL. And the addition of Pro-Bowl wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr., has definitely lifted my hopes from having a winning season to now having playoff and – dare I say – Super Bowl aspirations.

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Kareem Hunt- A follow up

Sonja Greenfield, OTFB Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

You’ll have to forgive me for taking on this issue again. I really don’t mean to beat a dead horse, but as a woman-owned site, I sort of feel a responsibility to speak about this.

Earlier this off season the Cleveland Browns signed running back Kareem Hunt. To recap, Hunt was released from the Chiefs after a video came out of him kicking a woman, in a Cleveland Hotel.

At the time, the League had yet to disclose a punishment for that behavior. The League announced late last week that they were suspending Hunt for 8 games.

That’s a start.

But you know what I find slightly funny, but not funny is the angle that some are taking with this.

Exhibit A:  CBS Sports has an article that’s called NFL Insider Notes:  Browns win again with Kareem Hunt return date. To be fair, that’s only part of the headline, but it’s the part of the headline that I feel is most impactful.

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AFC North – Everything is about to change

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8

Let’s face it – the AFC North was a hot mess last year! With Le’Veon Bell sitting out, the once-dominant Pittsburgh Steelers had to root for the Cleveland Browns in Week 17 in order to make the playoffs.

The Baltimore Ravens benched quarterback Joe Flacco and began the new era of Lamar Jackson football. Can Jackson keep being the leading rusher for this team and avoid injury?

The Cincinnati Bengals landed at the bottom of a division where the Browns had held that spot for too many years to count. But the once 0-16 Browns, under the leadership of rookie QB Baker Mayfield, are making their case to take over the division.

Let’s take a team-by-team look at the moves they’ve made so far to get ready for the battle to be “Kings of the North.”

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Being a woman and an NFL fan

Sonja Greenfield, Detroit Lions Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield // @Mom23RN

It’s not easy being a female sports fan.  More specifically, a female football fan.

On Monday, it was announced that the Cleveland Browns signed former Kansas City Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt. To refresh our memory, Hunt was released by the Chiefs back in November for domestic violence allegations.  He was caught on camera kicking a woman in a hotel. Though he still potentially faces disciplinary action from the League, as of today, he’s a Cleveland Brown.

My husband once told me, “I don’t know how you can be a woman and still like the NFL.”  Ummm…wow.  That hurt a little bit. But he’s right. (And no, this isn’t the first time I’ve acknowledged that he’s right, BTW)

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