Wake-up call: Browns' Little finds mentor

May, 27, 2013
5/27/13
8:00
AM ET
Hope everyone is enjoying their Memorial Day weekend and can take time to remember the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. The blog will be a little light today because of the holiday. I'm glad to be back after a week away, and it doesn't look like I missed much news. Here's your wake-up call ...

RAVENS: The Baltimore Sun's Kevin Cowherd believes outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil should prepare to be a leader on the Ravens' defense this year, a label that he has been hesitant to place upon himself in his first year with the team. "Oh, you can't blame Dumervil for not wanting to big-foot anyone and act like he's proclaiming himself the next Ray Lewis," Cowherd wrote. "He's just trying to fit in with his new teammates right now, trying to learn a new system and all that's expected of him in Dean Pees' defense. But at some point this season, Dumervil will have to step up and lead."

BENGALS: Defensive end Michael Johnson, who received the franchise tag this year, missed being with the Bengals while taking spring semester classes at Georgia Tech. He is scheduled to earn a degree in business management next year. “I wanted to be back up here. That was real tough," Johnson told The Cincinnati Enquirer. "I just was ready to be back to football. Everyone had that itch to get back going and working with your teammates, get back to going through football stuff." The Bengals have until July 15 to sign him to a long-term deal or Johnson will play under the $11.175 million tag.

STEELERS: Two-time Pro Bowl punter Brian Moorman has a familiarity with Steelers' special teams coach Danny Smith, who coached the Buffalo Bills' special teams for three seasons (2001-03) when Moorman was there. Moorman, though, is unfamiliar with the playoffs, failing to reach the postseason in 13 years in the NFL. "It's one of the big reasons I chose the Steelers," Moorman told The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "I have a deep belief that last year was definitely an anomaly with this organization. I've come from a team and played a long time when we weren't too terribly upset with 8-8. I promise you that they are here. To have an opportunity to play in the playoffs was a big selling point to me, to be a part of this."

BROWNS: Greg Little, who has led Cleveland in receptions the past two seasons, is following the lead of someone else. Davone Bess has become a mentor since joining the Browns last month in a trade from the Miami Dolphins. “He’s a pro,” Little told the team's official website. “He’s one of those guys that’s first-in, last-out, and that was good for him to come into our room and bring that with him. I think he compliments our room well, and what he’s able to do inside and on third downs, he’s proven he can be a playmaker. Just talking with him and seeing how he runs routes and what he’s thinking when he’s running routes is really what we’ve been talking about. He’s just added a little bit more to my game as well.”

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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