NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers


The addition of TE Rob Gronkowski got a lot of hype this offseason for the Buccaneers. But through two games Gronkowski has just two catches on four targets. Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians is known for not historically featuring the tight end in his offense as much as some coaches and he made it clear that’s not changing just off Gronkowski’s reputation. 

“We haven’t had that many red-zone opportunities and I don’t see him running 40 yards past people anymore…” Arians said via the Athletic’s Greg Auman. “We brought him in to just play tight end. If that means no catches, that means no catches. If it means 10 catches, it means 10 catches because he’s open and that’s where the ball goes.”


Part of Atlanta’s revival in the second half of the season last year was when Falcons HC Dan Quinn ceded control of the defensive playcalling to defensive assistants Raheem Morris and Jeff Ulbrich. But so far those results haven’t carried over to 2020 as the Falcons defense has been lit up each of the first two weeks for 38 and 40 points. However, Quinn doesn’t plan to change course yet. 

“No,” Quinn said via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “No changes. I’m involved in all of the defensive calls and all of the preparation as well. . . . Well, I didn’t say it’s going to remain as it is from our performance, but in terms of the process that we go through I have a lot of confidence in the staff. I have a lot of confidence in the players that we will get the performances that we are looking for.”


  • Per ESPN’s David Newton, Panthers HC Matt Rhule pushed back on the characterization of QB Teddy Bridgewater as a game manager: “Teddy’s an excellent quarterback. He’s brought a young team back from double digits twice. When you do that you’re not a game manager.”
  • Panthers placed RB Christian McCaffrey on injured reserve. (NFLTR)
  • Panthers activated OL Chris Reed from the COVID-19 list.

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