Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 3/3/13
A look at some of the top story lines in the AFC North as the NFL free agency period looms on the horizon:Baltimore - The Ravens made quarterback Joe Flacco the highest-paid quarterback in NFL history, signing him to a six-year, $120 million contract. The move was seen by many as not only the right thing to do, but also necessary.The problem for the Ravens is that they still have several free agents to re-sign, most notably Ed Reed, Anquan Boldin, and Dannell Ellerbe among others. Not to mention that veteran center Matt Birk recently announced his retirement.In the end, this move may end up panning out much like Peyton Manning's deal in Indy in 2004. For now, it would seem the Ravens have too many question marks to address on their roster. Cincinnati - Bengals' middle linebacker Rey Maualuga becomes a free agent this year, and re-signing the fourth-year veteran from USC must be seen as a priority for the franchise. It seems funny to say that Maualuga was second on the team in tackles in 2012 with 122. What isn’t funny is his importance to Cincinnati’s defense.The Bengals also need to address issues in the secondary, and there are some interesting names available in the free agent market. At the end of the day, though, they may just look to the Draft to address this issue. Cleveland - The Browns have been linked to several high-profile wide receiver free agents, including Mike Wallace of Pittsburgh and Kansas City's Steve Breaston. The Browns' interest in the aforementioned individuals appears to be cursory at best, as reports have now surfaced they are looking to land a top-flight tight end.Of course, this is coming from an organization that passed on both Jimmy Graham and Rob Gronkowski, and the former even came with a very high recommendation from former Browns' great, Bernie Kosar. Pittsburgh - The Steelers, willing to let Mike Wallace shop the free agent market, have apparently found his replacement already. Kansas City's Steve Breaston is the top candidate to replace Wallace, and what he may lack in speed he makes up for in route running ability. In addition, it also seems apparent the black and gold feel that Antonio Brown is a more explosive wide out anyway. 
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Rose complains about triangle offense as trade rumors swirl

Joel Embiid to miss next four games for 76ers

Vince Young attempting to trademark ‘Make Vince Great Again’

Report: Mavericks get Nerlens Noel in trade with 76ers

NASCAR announces four drivers will lend their voices to 'Cars 3'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Draymond Green video game highlights his groin-shot past

Paul George trade unlikely despite interest from Lakers and Celtics

Report: David Ortiz could join Red Sox broadcast team this season

Report: Knicks, T-Wolves working on Rose-Rubio trade

Rick Pitino calls heckling UNC fan ‘coward,’ says it was not a student

Winston criticized for giving sexist speech to schoolchildren

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

Box Score 2/23: Gillon's buzzer-beater blast for the win

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

Box Score 2/22: Not everyone is happy with the new intentional walk rule

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win the MVP award

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker