Wake-up call: Interest in Grimes, Dumervil

After a busy few days to start free agency, this weekend included a lot of rumors but no signings. Expect some deals (as well as the announcement of compensatory picks) over the next couple of days at the NFL owners meetings. The AFC North blog won't be on site at Phoenix, Ariz., but I'll be giving my take on any news coming from the desert. Let's catch up on some free-agent talk in the wake-up call ...


  • General manager Ozzie Newsome told USA Today that he plans to meet with Ed Reed's agent this week at the owners meetings and expects the free-agent safety to make a decision this coming week. Reed spent two days visiting the Texans last week but left without a deal.

  • The Ravens have "serious interest" in Broncos free-agent defensive end Elvis Dumervil, according to The Baltimore Sun. Dumervil was released by the Broncos when they didn't receive the paperwork in time to reduce his $12 million salary.

  • Baltimore picked up the $5 million roster bonus on cornerback Lardarius Webb, The Sun reported. Webb, who tore his ACL in the sixth game of the season, will earn $2.385 million in base salary this season and carries a $5.385 million salary-cap figure.


  • It looks like the Bengals are "closing in" on deals to retain two of their own free agents, linebacker Rey Maualuga and cornerback Adam Jones, according to the team's official website. Cornerback Terence Newman also remains high on the team's priority list.


  • The Steelers and Packers have both expressed interest in Giants free-agent running back Ahmad Bradshaw, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. Bradshaw, who turns 27 on Tuesday, had surgery to replace a screw in his right foot in late January but should be ready for offseason camps.

  • Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert told The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that the team hasn't received any official word that wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders has signed an offer sheet with the Patriots. Sanders, a restricted free agent, visited New England on Friday.

  • Just like the Ravens, the Steelers are also interested in Dumervil, according to The Sun. The Patriots and Titans are also reportedly interested in him.

  • Head coach Mike Tomlin told The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that the locker room isn't reeling from the losses of veterans James Farrior, Hines Ward and Aaron Smith. "I don't think we're devoid of leadership at all," he said.

  • For their September game in London this season, the Steelers will practice Wednesday and Thursday in Pittsburgh before taking an overnight flight to England. The Steelers will fly back following the game against the Vikings, which means they will only spend two nights there (Friday and Saturday). As the Tribune-Review points out, that's just one more night than they usually stay for games.


  • Falcons free agent Brent Grimes, the best cornerback remaining, "came away impressed" from his visit with the Browns and is expected to narrow his choices sometime this week, a source told The Plain Dealer.

  • Browns free-agent receiver-returner Josh Cribbs is visiting the Cardinals, according to Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer. How does she know? Well, Cribbs was spotted on her flight to Arizona, where the owners meetings are being held this week.