NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers, Saints



Tom Brady said their Week 2 performance was “a little better” before adding that they’re “still are a long way from where we need to be.”

It was a little bit better. I think we still are a long way from where we need to be,” Brady said, via “We have the ability to make plays I think consistency dependability are going to be things that we really need. So we got to get back to work. Clock is ticking on next week so gonna get focused on next week’s game and try to be a lot better next week.”

  • Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians said he’s happy with how the running back rotation has shaken out, with Ronald Jones starting, LeSean McCoy in the third-down role and Leonard Fournette rotating with Jones and coming in as the closer in the fourth quarter: “I love the way it’s at right now. To have Leonard come in fresh-legged in the fourth quarter and pound it like that, very few teams have that combination.” (Greg Auman)
  • Arians isn’t concerned with TE Rob Gronkowski‘s usage, as the veteran has two catches in two games: “We’re not throwing it 50 times to the tight ends. That’s what we have receivers for.” (Auman)
  • Buccaneers WR Chris Godwin cleared the concussion protocol and should return in Week 3 against the Broncos. (Auman)


  • ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports the Falcons fear RT Kaleb McGary suffered a sprained MCL during Sunday’s game and will undergo an MRI Monday to determine the extent of damage and how much time he will miss.
  • However, NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport reports the Falcons got good news and McGary is expected to miss just a week. 
  • Falcons HC Dan Quinn said there would be no changes to who calls the plays on defense at the moment. (Vaughn McClure)
  • Falcons tried out DB D.J. White on Monday. (Albert Breer)
  • Falcons hosted DT Chris Slayton for a visit on Monday.


  • Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, citing a source with knowledge of the situation, reports Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey insists he’s “fine,” despite the ankle injury he suffered on Sunday.
  • However, Florio’s source added that even if McCaffrey wasn’t fine, he’d insist he is. A report Monday indicated McCaffrey’s ankle injury is indeed expected to keep him out “multiple weeks.” (NFLTR)
  • Panthers HC Matt Rhule confirmed it’s a high ankle sprain for McCaffrey and he’s unsure of the exact timeline. He appeared to suffer the injury a couple plays before his touchdown run: “He has a high ankle sprain. I’m not sure how long it’ll be. . . . It happened two plays before that touchdown. I think we ran a trap.” (David Newton)
  • The usual timeline for high ankle sprains is four to six weeks but McCaffrey is looking to beat that: “They say four to six weeks. Well, that’s a challenge to me. And I’m gonna attack it, like I attack anything else.” (Joe Person)
  • McCaffrey said he sprained his ankle in high school but hasn’t had any issues with it otherwise. (Person)


  • According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Saints WR Michael Thomas will travel to Green Bay for an in-person consultation on his high-ankle sprain with Dr. Robert Anderson. 
  • Anderson, who is also the Packers’ team doctor, is a subject expert and has already reviewed Thomas’ MRI. The hope is Thomas can work his way back to be healthy enough to get clearance from Anderson for New Orleans’ Week 3 matchup against Green Bay. High-ankle sprains are usually a 4-6 week injury. 
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