NFC Notes: Bryce Young, Falcons, Panthers, Saints


Falcons CB Dee Alford could find himself in a starting role in just his second season in the league and has drawn praise from HC Arthur Smith.

“To cover those routes inside, I mean, there’s a lot of space,” Smith said, via Mike Rothstein of ESPN. “He’s tougher than hell, quick. But very, very pleased. Those were some of the traits that you saw in those guys as we brought them in and worked them out. He’s really done a nice job.”


Panthers HC Frank Reich said first-round QB Bryce Young taking over sole possession of reps with the first team was the next step in his development.

That was something, at the beginning, Scott [Fitterer] and I kinda earmarked the time when we thought would be best. Kinda mapped it out, talked it through with the staff,” Reich said, via Panthers Wire. “At the beginning of the offseason, this was kinda the time that we had marked this week to just kinda move him up. It’s just the next step, right? There’s really nothing to say other than, ‘Hey, we really just wanted to move him up this week.’

Young has impressed Reich with his ability to pick up the offense which gave him the confidence to move him up.

Obviously, I had very high expectations as far as mentally,” he replied. “And those expectations have been met. But, ya know, he’s like everybody else. It’s a new offense—especially some of the other stuff that we’re doin’ that he’s not done before. There’s a lot that we’re doing that he has done before. But I hope it’s been challenging for him. I think it has been.


Saints HC Dennis Allen spoke about WR Michael Thomas and QB Derek Carr ahead of training camp.

“I think as we sit here right now, there’s one player who may be questionable for the start of training camp, although I’m optimistic that he’ll be ready,” Allen said, via Katherine Terrell of ESPN. “I feel pretty good about having everybody here for training camp healthy and ready to go.”

“I think quarterback is the most important position on the field,” Allen continued. “And when you have a highly skilled player, a highly intelligent player, a guy that works the way Derek does, a guy that has the type of leadership qualities that Derek has, that’s going to filter throughout the whole football team — players and coaches — and I think that gives you a lot of confidence going into the season.”

“I’m just trying to be better,” Carr added. “Better teammate every year. There’s things last year, learning a new system, trying to go through certain situations … I don’t think they got the best of me. They just didn’t get my best, and that drove me crazy at the end of the year because I felt so spread out in so many different ways.”

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