NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Saints



Buccaneers LT Donovan Smith publicly questioned whether it would be safe for him to play during the pandemic back in July, especially with a new daughter on the way. However, the opt-out deadline came and went and Smith felt comfortable enough with the team’s safety measures to buy into playing this year. 

“With the protocols and stuff, they’re pretty good at following them, spreading everybody out, hand sanitizing stuff, masks everywhere,” Smith said via Eduardo Encina of the Tampa Bay Times. “With the daily testing and everything and having those results, for me it just boiled down to just having the ability to go a different place from with my lady or my child if anything was to happen, so that was the deciding factor there.”

  • Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians has been impressed with seventh-round LB Chapelle Russell after the rookie came into camp in great shape and retained a lot of what was discussed during virtual OTAs. (Greg Auman)
  • Arians notes the key for UDFA CB Parnell Motley, who has made some splash plays, to stick on the roster will be his contributions on special teams. (Auman)
  • Arians seemingly indicated the depth chart at offensive tackle is more set with Josh Wells taking the fourth and final spot. (Auman)
  • Buccaneers OL coach Harold Goodwin mentioned Aaron Stinnie, Zack Bailey and UDFA John Molchon when asked about the competition for backup jobs along the interior offensive line. (Auman)


  • Per ESPN’s Vaughn McClure, the Falcons have been impressed with what they’ve seen from DL John Cominksy so far during camp. 
  • Falcons G Jamon Brown has entered the concussion protocol. (William McFadden)


  • Per Nick Underhill, Saints DL coach Ryan Nielsen is impressed with DT Sheldon Rankins who was still battling the effects of an Achilles injury in 2019: “He’s moving without a hitch. I don’t see it at all. He’s done a couple things, and it’s exciting.”
  • Saints LB coach Michael Hodges says Nigel Bradham will play either middle or strongside linebacker. (Larry Holder)

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