Around the AFC North (2/19): Hue Jackson to Cincinnati

In today's edition of Around the AFC North, we take a look at the Bengals adding another former head coach to their staff, how much money Joe Flacco's agent wants for his client, and who will return kicks for the Steelers next season.

Cincinnati Bengals: Hue Jackson Presents an Opportunity for Next Season

On Friday, the Bengals announced the hiring of former Oakland Raiders head coach Hue Jackson. The position he was hired for seems a little unusual given his recent history, though.

If you were surprised that the Cincinnati Bengals hired Hue Jackson on Friday to become an assistant coach with the defensive backs and special teams, you're hardly alone. Jackson has limited (if any) experience as a defensive coach, much less as a defensive backs coach. The last time he was an assistant with special teams was 1991 with the defunct London Monarchs in the World League of American Football, which would eventually become NFL Europe (which is also now gone).

Cincy Jungle thinks that this could set up a scenario in which offensive coordinator Jay Gruden gets hired somewhere as a head coach next year, allowing Jackson to smoothly transition into that position in 2013.

Baltimore Ravens: Joe Flacco Needs Top Five Money

While you always want an agent to get you the best deal possible, I think it's pretty hilarious that Joe Flacco's agent is pushing for top five money.

The agent for Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco is saying that the four-year veteran deserves a new contract paying him what is considered top five money. Based on his playoff appearances and the fact that Flacco has won more games in his first four seasons (including playoffs) than any other QB in NFL history, he might have a compelling argument.

Pittsburgh Steelers: Sanders to Return Kicks This Season

We're not even close to next season starting, but the Steelers' Emmanuel Sanders said on the radio recently that he will replace fellow receiver Antonio Brown on kickoff and punt returns next season.

Sanders will replace AFC Pro Bowl WR/KR Antonio Brown, the only player in NFL history with 1,000 return and receiving yards in the same season. It's likely due to the larger role Brown will play in the team's offense, but at the same time, Sanders performed well on returns his rookie season, picking up 628 yards on 25 returns.

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