AFC North Notes: J. Thomas, Ravens, Walford

Responding to a reader’s question in today’s mailbag, Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer reveals that the Browns had the opportunity to trade left tackle Joe Thomas to a NFC East or NFC West team last year. It’s a bit of a confusing statement — Thomas is one of the best offensive lineman in the NFL, meaning it shouldn’t be difficult for Cleveland to find suitors for him if he were on the block, so the fact that Kabot uses the term “opportunity” is odd. Reading between the lines, I’m guessing that the Browns may have had extremely preliminary discussions about dealing Thomas, but decided to retain their All Pro.

Here’s more from the AFC North, with several notes out of Baltimore:

  • The Ravens had a predraft visit with Miami tight end Clive Walford, reports Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun. Baltimore is on the lookout for a tight end given Dennis Pitta‘s injury concerns, and Walford could be in had in either the second or third round. PFR’s Rob DiRe pointed to Walford as the possible standout among this year’s crop of tight ends.
  • Baltimore coveted pass rusher Khalil Mack in the 2014 draft, but Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome wasn’t able to convince the Raiders to trade picks. This year, writes Jeff Zriebec of the Baltimore Sun, Newsome & Co. will have to decide whether to move up, down, or stand pat, while noting that Newsome has executed a draft-day trade in 13 consecutive seasons.
  • In his latest mailbag for, Jamison Hensley opines that the Ravens could work out a long-term deal for Marshal Yanda before the season, and argues that despite Jimmy Smith‘s recent extension, cornerback is still an area of need for Baltimore.
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