NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Cardinals, Panthers



  • CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora writes sources close to Buccaneers QB Tom Brady have taken notice of how willing HC Bruce Arians is to throw Brady under the bus publicly in his press conferences and believe it’s partially to distract from the failings of the coaching staff. 
  • La Canfora has talked to NFL executives and scouts who call the Buccaneers offense predictable and not playing to Brady’s strengths. 
  • However, a longtime NFL assistant close to Arians doesn’t expect him to change his offense: “This is BA’s offense and it will always be BA’s offense. He is who he is, and they do what they do. No risk it, no biscuit. Drop it back and let it go. At this stage of his career, I don’t see that changing for anyone — not even Tom Brady.”
  • Observers also cite the lack of a really good passing down back as something that’s hurting Brady right now: “Brady doesn’t have that go-to guy in the screen game. That’s a huge loss for him. You can rush four and play coverage and zone them up, and they make a play here and a play there but nothing consistent.”
  • When asked about potential conflict between him and Arian, Brady said: “Just external noise.” (Greg Auman)


  • CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora says the Cardinals are coming up in league circles as a team that could make some coaching staff changes on the defensive side of the ball. Arizona’s defensive coordinator is Vance Joseph.


  • Per CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, a source close to the situation says the Panthers have real belief in QB P.J. Walker, who played for HC Matt Rhule at Temple. Carolina believes Walker has a future as a strong backup or even potential starter: “This wasn’t just some throwaway signing. Matt really believes this kid can play.”
  • La Canfora adds the team had its eye on Walker when it decided to trade away QB Kyle Allen to Washington for a fifth-round pick. 
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