Perhaps the best sign that the Bengals have become contenders is that the Steelers are signing their players.
Linebacker Brandon Johnson, a special-teamer who appeared in every game during his four years with the Bengals, has jumped to the other side of the Ohio River rivalry. The Steelers announced the move on Wednesday morning.
Before that, the fifth-round pick in 2006 spent two seasons with the Cardinals.
The Steelers also have signed former Ravens, Pats, and Vikings long snapper Matt Katula.
To clear out two spots on the 90-man roster, the Steelers released tight end Wes Lyons, and waived/injured receiver Connor Dixon.
Dixon will land on the Steelers’ injured reserve list, unless the Patriots claim him.