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Around the AFC North (2/27): La Confora Has Bengals Taking Peterson

In today's edition of Around the AFC North, we take a look at a new player that a mock draft has the Bengals taking, Mike Tomlin meeting with draft prospect Mike Pouncey, and Ravens coach John Harbaugh talking about what Joe Flacco is allowed to say.

Cincinnati Bengals: La Confora Says Bengals Could Take Peterson

We've seen so many mock drafts now that have the Browns drafting one of a common subset of players come April. In Jason La Confora's latest mock draft on though, he picked a new player that Bengals fans weren't accustomed to seeing listed for their team: cornerback Patrick Peterson.

Cincy Jungle tries to make sense of the selection:

It makes sense, right? The Bengals had the chance to use their franchise tag on Joseph before the Feb. 24 deadline but elected not to use their tag. Also, now that Champ Bailey has signed a large deal with Denver, Joseph has a measuring stick of how much he's worth. If the Bengals decide that they don't want to pay Joseph what he feels he's worth, another team will. Adam Jones could step in and start for Joseph, if he stays healthy. However, both Jones and Leon Hall are both set to be free agents after the 2011 season. If Hall decides that he's worth what Bailey and Joseph are, the Bengals could decide to let him go too. If that turns out to be the case, they could use a guy like Peterson.

Pittsburgh Steelers: Tomlin and Others Meet With Mike Pouncey

Offensive lineman Mike Pouncey met with a bunch of teams the other day, among them being the Steelers and the Ravens. Relatives shouldn't play a factor in boosting one's draft stock, but in this case Mike believes the play of his brother Maurkice has done him at least a slight favor:

Pouncey acknowledged that his draft stock has been boosted by his brother's success. "He played great," Pouncey said. "It only shows what both of us can do. I think it can only help, but they’re not going to draft me because he played good."

Baltimore Ravens: Flacco Has the Right to Speak Out

Ravens coach John Harbaugh spoke out about how he felt when quarterback Joe Flacco voiced his displeasure at the dismissal of quarterbacks coach Jim Zorn earlier this offseason:

"Joe is a leader, Joe said the same thing to me," Harbaugh said. "Joe and I share that respect for Jim Zorn. Jim is a great coach and a great guy. For Joe to come out and say that publicly, I think it says a lot about Joe. It says a lot about what kind of person he is. He’s got everybody’s back. He’s got Jim’s back. He’s got all our backs. And we have his back. And that’s what it should be about."