- Buccaneers QB Baker Mayfield appeared on The Dan Patrick Show and was asked about re-signing with the team: “I think the ball is in their court right now. I’ve been vocal about the mutual interest. I was very appreciative of the opportunity I had there and just how they run the organization. Everything they are all about, just how do we win, how do we put our guys in the best position to win. Going into free agency, my mindset would be looking for something similar to that. And obviously, seeing it first I know how they operate.”
- Mayfield on his success in Tampa: “I don’t know why everyone thought Tampa wasn’t gonna be very good. A lot of pieces that were there from the playoff runs are still intact. It’s a great locker room, the culture is great, and they know how to win. We had a rough lull in the mid-year but guys stuck together. They know how to react when adversity hits. We came together even closer and offensively we decided to iron out little details, stopped shooting ourselves in the foot, and decided to go from there.”
- A report from NFL Media indicates Mayfield would have a market from other teams as a potential starter given his performance this past year, so Tampa Bay will have to pay up to keep him.
Falcons owner Arthur Blank made clear that Bill Belichick never asked for complete control of personnel and staff choices during the interview process.
“I do want to make it 1,000 percent clear, want to go to 2,000 percent or 100,000, whatever percent you want to use,” Blank said, via Michael Rothstein. “Bill Belichick never asked for, in our discussion, full control of the personnel or the building or anything of that nature. He was very inclusive, very collaborative. He met Terry Fontenot, checked out our people doing his own references, sent me a private text, which I eventually shared with Terry that he’d be happy working with him.”
Blank said new HC Raheem Morris described what he learned as a coach during his time with the Rams.
“The three years he had in L.A. where he worked with a different coaching environment, a different kind of setup which Sean McVay operates different than a lot of other coaches do,” Blank said. “And their coaching scheme and setup and how they promote from within and just move coaches around in a much more lateral way was a learning experience for him.”
As for the quarterback role, Blank said frankly that the position “needs work” this offseason.
“I don’t think there’s anybody that we spoke to who would define our quarterback situation as anything other than something that needs work,” Blank said. “And I’m being kind. This is not a criticism of the players. I said this during the press conference sometimes what makes a quarterback either really good or not so good, it’s not just how he’s playing the game but the scheme they’re in, the plays that are being called, the just a variety of things that go into making good quarterback play.”
- A report from NFL Media says Bers QB Justin Fields is a popular name that comes up when asking NFL sources what the Falcons will do at quarterback this offseason. There’s a good chance Fields is traded by Chicago. However, it’s not clear what Atlanta’s preferred option is yet.
- The Falcons pick No. 8 overall and they’re in position to trade up for a quarterback. However, that would require a team in the top three being willing to move down the board, which isn’t a given at this stage, per NFL Media.
- NFL Media adds the Falcons could explore the trade market for former starting QB Desmond Ridder this offseason to give both sides a fresh start.
Buccaneers QB Baker Mayfield hinted at organizational dysfunction within the Panthers’ organization.
“I mean, it starts top-down,” Mayfield said, via Panthers Wire. “How they run the organization and everybody bein’ on the same page and just, how do you win games? When you got a lot of voices goin’ on behind the scenes, you’re makin’ distractions for your players. You’re not puttin’ them in a good position to have success and play free. So for me, gettin’ to Tampa — it was refreshing.”
- ESPN’s Seth Walder reports Panthers senior director of football strategy and analytics Taylor Rajack is no longer with the team.
- CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones notes the Panthers multiplied new executive Brandt Tilis‘ pay “many times over” to lure him to Carolina from Kansas City.
- Tom Pelissero reports that the Panthers are hiring Will Harriger as their QB coach.