AFC North: Ted Monachino

Here's the buzz surrounding the Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens as they hold rookie minicamps this weekend:

BENGALS: First-round cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick had an uneven start in his first minicamp. "[He] got challenged often as he was matched up against Vidal Hazelton and [Armon] Binns," the Cincinnati Enquirer's Joe Reedy wrote. "Some times he did well and other times he struggled as the receivers got a step or two in coverage." Undrafted linebacker Vontaze Burfict had an uneventful first day, meanwhile. He told reporters that he is motivated to prove people wrong. "Not being picked, going undrafted, I have a big chip on my shoulder," Burfict said. "I’m ready to hit somebody.”

BROWNS: Much of the focus was on first-round quarterback Brandon Weeden. "He displayed an arm strength not seen around these parts since Derek Anderson, but the smooth touch on short passes that Anderson didn't possess," the Cleveland Plain Dealer's Mary Kay Cabot wrote. The third overall pick, running back Trent Richardson also made an impression. He stiff-armed a defender and knocked him to the ground even though it was a non-contract practice.

RAVENS: Baltimore's rookie minicamp was closed to reporters. According to the team's website, which had access to practice, second-round linebacker Courtney Upshaw moved around at different positions and looked solid in pass coverage. The website reported: "He recognized a swing pass on one play, and would have had a tackle for loss, drawing praise from linebackers coach Ted Monachino. He also had a tipped pass that was picked off."

Morning take: Steelers' Reed tagged?

February, 24, 2010
2/24/10
7:00
AM ET
Here are the most interesting stories Wednesday in the AFC North: Morning take: This means Reed can seek other deals in free agency and the Steelers will have the right to match. The potential to lose Reed would create some extra intrigue for Pittsburgh.
Morning take: Look for teams like the Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Ravens to watch Gresham's progress closely this week. Injuries kept him out of football last season.
Morning take: Monachino worked with Terrell Suggs in college. Let’s see if he can help Suggs bounce back with a great year in 2010.
Morning take: By now AFC North readers should be familiar with my hard rule to never draft a receiver in the top 10. The Browns have too many holes to fill before they should consider Bryant.

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