The Cincinnati Bengals have given their starting middle linebacker Vontaze Burfict a contract extension on the eve of the team's regular season opener. Plus, their fellow AFC North rivals the Cleveland Browns have released a backup safety, and the New England Patriots are down another wide receiver after already losing Julian Edelman to a torn ACL about two weeks ago.

Bengals reward Burfict

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that a source told him that the Cincinnati Bengals and linebacker Vontaze Burfict have agreed on a three-year, $38.68 million contract extension.

This now locks up the controversial linebacker through the 2020 season.

Burfict went undrafted in 2012 and the following year had made the Pro Bowl and was named a second team All-Pro by the AP. The last three season Burflict has only played in 26 of a possible 48 games due to injury and being suspended the first three games of the 2016 season. Burflict was suspended for the first five games of this season but that was reduced down to only three games.

Browns cut Calvin Pryor

The Cleveland Browns have released safety Calvin Pryor only three months after trading linebacker Demario Davis to the New York Jets in order to acquire him. A league source familiar with the incident told ESPN that Pryor was released after he got into a scuffle with receiver Ricardo Louis before practice today.

Apparently, Pryor drew the wrath of head coach Hue Jackson when he did not heed his command to stop fighting and walk away from the scuffle with Louis. Jackson was mum on Pryor's release when asked about it, saying that, “Things happen. We move on.” For his part, Louis also declined to issue a statement on the incident. With Pryor's release, the team called up undrafted rookie Kai Nacua to replace him as the backup safety.

Patriots put Malcolm Mitchell on IR

The New England Patriots put second-year wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell on short term injured reserve. Mitchell, who has been dealing with a knee issue all offseason, can't practice for six weeks of the regular season and will not be eligible to play in a game until week nine.

Mitchell was projected as the team's fourth receiver behind Chris Hogan, Brandin Cooks, and Danny Amendola.

His health was questioned, and that was part of the reason that the Patriots traded third-string quarterback Jacoby Brissett to the Colts for Phillip Dorsett. Offensive lineman Ted Karras was promoted from the practice squad to replace Mitchell.