NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers, Saints


Buccaneers HC Todd Bowles is happy with his current situation in Tampa and is looking forward to what the team can accomplish this season.

“What’s there not to be happy about?” Bowles replied, via “I’m in warm weather. I’ve got good veteran leadership. We’ve got a lot of continuity and they work. They’re not prima donnas. That’s the biggest thing.”

Bowles thinks he’s been set up much better for success in Tampa Bay and talked about the difficulties facing Black coaches trying to get the top jobs. 

“You don’t want to take a job to take a job,” Bowles added. “I felt like I did that the first time around. It’s a two-way street. Other than the racism, you’ve got to go through the offensive [coaches] and the system, whether they know you well enough. Or what they’re looking for. There are a lot more general managers hired now and there are more package deals than there have been in the past. If you hire a GM from another team, you pretty much know who they’re going to hire. If you don’t do the interview, you’re ‘ignorant.’ If you do the interview, you know at some point when it’s a token interview. I’m at peace with the way I coach and teach and I’m in a place I love, so I’m good. I’m good. But there’s a couple of other guys — Raheem Morris, Leslie Frazier, Byron Leftwich, [Eric Bieniemy] — I feel for those guys. I’ve been there. I can see what they see and I understand it.”

  • Buccaneers OLB Carl Nassib‘s one-year deal is a veteran salary benefit contract with a $1.035 million base salary and a $152,500 signing bonus. (Greg Auman)


Falcons QB Marcus Mariota is looking forward to working with TE Kyle Pitts, hoping it will bring him success as he becomes a starter once again in his career.

“He’s an easy guy to throw to, how rangy he is and his physical attributes,” Mariota said, via Josh Kendall of The “He really makes it easy on us. His size, his length, his catch radius, his ability to get in and out of cuts, it makes it easy on us. His body language as a receiver makes it simple. We know when he’s coming in and out of breaks. We know when he’s going to break down. It’s fun throwing to a guy like that. You don’t have to be perfect, you just have to give him the opportunity to catch the ball.”

Pitts is working on transitioning into a leadership role and said the game “has slowed down just a tad” for him now that he knows that Falcons offense and how opposing defenses will try and stop him.

“I’m a little more confident knowing the game,” Pitts said. “Just to be one of the speakers on offense and be able to set the right example. It’s something that comes with adulting and maturing, to be able to take your guard down and speak in front of the team.”

He also has an obvious goal of scoring more than one touchdown this season.

“Every morning that’s something I’m thinking about, like, ‘We can’t have that again,’” Pitts added. “That’s a steady thing in the back of my mind.”


  • Panthers HC Matt Rhule says C Bradley Bozeman will be out for 2-3 weeks due to an ankle injury. (Doug Kyed)
  • Rhule also noted that WR Robbie Anderson is currently dealing with a quad injury. (Kyed)
  • As for the continuous fights in joint practices with the Patriots, Rhule told the media that he has not ruled out cutting S Kenny Robinson due to being ejected multiple times. (Ellis Williams)
  • Chiefs recently signed DT Danny Shelton said he also had interest from the Panthers, Raiders, and Jaguars as a free agent and his final decision came down to Kansas City or Jacksonville. (Pete Sweeney)


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