NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Cardinals, Falcons

     

Buccaneers

Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians mentioned that he views OC Byron Leftwich as a “rising star” and someone who could be a future head coach. 

“I’ve been training guys for this job,” Arians said regarding Leftwich, via Jenna Laine of ESPN.com. “I always said I would never give up [playcalling] and look over anybody’s shoulder until I found one I knew could do it. I think he’s a rising star in this business.

“I think the whole time he’s been outstanding. Really, really done a great job in the meeting rooms. I think he first of all is an excellent teacher. He knows what he’s talking about. He’s a heck of a teacher. So, he’s got the guys right where they need to be.

Cardinals

  • Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic expects the Cardinals to cut former first-round DL Robert Nkemdiche loose “as soon as it makes financial sense.
  • This comes a few days after the news surfaced that Nkemdiche had been arrested earlier in the month for suspicion of speeding and driving with a suspended license.
  • Somers notes that cutting Nkemdiche could be somewhat tricky for the Cardinals, given that rehabilitating from the knee injury and won’t be ready by the start of training camp. 
  • Arizona owes Nkemdiche a $400,000 bonus if he’s on the roster on the fifth day of training camp.

Falcons

Regarding Julio Jones‘ ongoing contract negotiations with the Falcons, Matt Ryan explained that Jones has a great handle on the business aspect of the NFL.

“He knows how to handle it. He handles it in his way, and he handles everything that comes his way really well,” Ryan said, per Vaughn McClure. “I have so much respect for him as a player, but even more respect for him as a man, as a person, as a friend. He should be the one we’re going to for advice. He’s so mature and wise beyond his years that maybe it should be the other way around. He’s on top of it and understands that it’s a business but at the same time, prepares and has himself ready to play and cares 100 percent about winning.”

“I don’t like to get involved in other people’s stuff, but he deserves everything that comes his way because he’s an unbelievable player and is as talented and productive as anyone,” Ryan added. “He changes the game as much, if not more, than any player in the league.” 

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