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Around the AFC North: Odell Beckham Jr. Is Talking Super Bowl in Cleveland


Browns: Odell Beckham Not Afraid to Talk Super Bowl in Cleveland

No team in the AFC North has been more hyped this offseason than the Cleveland Browns, picked by many as the favorite to win the AFC North.

Much of that buzz is generated by the star power of wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who the Browns acquired in a trade with the New York Giants. Beckham has huge talent and personality, and in an August cover story for GQ Magazine, he reiterated his intention to help Cleveland win its first Super Bowl.

"Legendary is going to Cleveland and trying to win a championship," Beckham said. "Who does not get into this game to be 11-5 or 12-4 every season, to win their conference, to win the championship, to go to the Super Bowl? What else would you do this for? Every year with the Giants, when they'd ask me, 'What are your goals for this year?' I would say to win a Super Bowl. There's no sugarcoating it. Even if you feel like your team can't do it, the goal is to win the Super Bowl. I don't understand what else I'm playing for. Playing to have a good season? No bro. I'm trying to win the Super Bowl."

The Browns will be under the microscope from the outset of training camp, as a franchise that hasn't made the playoffs since 2002 adjusts to drawing national attention. Cleveland has four prime-time games on its schedule, with Beckham and quarterback Baker Mayfield the marquee names who are leading a new era in Cleveland.

For Beckham, being in the spotlight is nothing new. He was a lightning rod for controversy with the Giants, but he also produced four 1,000-yard seasons during his six years and established himself as one of the NFL's top receivers. The Giants only made the playoffs once during Beckham's time in New York, but his spectacular one-handed catches attracted attention even during his pre-game warmups. Now Beckham looks forward to moving his act from New York to Cleveland.

"They were getting prime-time games, still, as a 5-and-11 team," Beckham said of the Giants. "Why? Because people want to see the show. You want to see me play. That's just real rap."

Mayfield is also the cover story of the latest ESPN the Magazine.

Steelers: Mike Tomlin Could Get a Contract Extension Soon

After leading the division much of last season, the Steelers were bitterly disappointed when they were overtaken by the Ravens and failed to make the playoffs. That finish, coupled with the departures of wide receiver Antonio Brown and running back Le'Veon Bell, have left Pittsburgh with a new look heading into camp.

Instead of proclaiming that the Steelers will be a playoff team, Head Coach Mike Tomlin is focusing on preparing for training camp.

"I acknowledge that there are some significant changes, but talking about it is not going to dictate the outcome," Tomlin said during an interview with "You won't hear a lot of bold predictions from us. That is not our style; that is not appropriate. We know that we are judged based on performance anyway."

Despite not making the playoffs, the chatter in Pittsburgh is about Tomlin deserving a contract extension before training camp opens. The Steelers made the playoffs four straight years before missing it last season.

Tomlin began his tenure in Pittsburgh in 2007, one year before Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh began in Baltimore. The only current NFL head coaches with longer tenures are Bill Belichick, who started with the New England Patriots in 2000, and Sean Payton, whose first year with the New Orleans Saints was 2006.

Tomlin has a stellar career record (125-66-1), which includes a Super Bowl victory and eight playoff appearance. He says the way last season ended has not increased his sense of urgency for 2019, because he always carries a sense of urgency.

"I shaped my reputation in this business and this outlook in this business being singular focused on the task at hand," Tomlin told "So I'd be kidding you if I told you that I had a certain edge because of what happened in 2018. I just have a certain edge because I better have a certain edge."

Bengals: Starting Left Guard Spot is Open Heading Into Camp

The Ravens have an open competition at left guard, and so do the Bengals. The original plan in Cincinnati was to move Cordy Glenn to left guard after Cincinnati drafted left tackle Jonah Williams in the first round. However, Williams will miss the entire season following surgery to repair a torn labrum in his shoulder. Glenn will move back to left tackle, leaving several players competing for the starting job at left guard

"Cordy can move back to left tackle, which is where he's played his whole career," Bengals Head Coach Zac Taylor told the Cincinnati Enquirer. "We have a lot of confidence in him there.

"It's unfortunate to lose guys in their rookie year. He (Williams) had high expectations for himself. But we'll be good. We have a lot of guys in there that can compete for those jobs. The left guard spot will be a competition in training camp and we'll be excited to see what happens there."

At least three players have a chance to win the starting job for the Bengals at left guard – Christian Westerman, John Jerry and Trey Hopkins.

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