NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Leonard Fournette, Panthers, Saints, Jameis Winston


Bucs RB Leonard Fournette showed up to training camp weighing 244 pounds after a report said that he was up to 260 pounds.

Leonard looked good,” HC Todd Bowles said, via ESPN. “I don’t know too many players in the offseason that are going to stay in shape year-around. As long as they’re in shape in training camp. He ran great in the test yesterday – he’s explosive, he’s quick and we’re happy with him.

Bowles didn’t criticize Fournette and said that he’s happy where his running back is at, adding that he thinks over time Fournette will continue to get into better shape as the season draws closer.

I feel like he’s in great shape right now, “Bowles said. “Obviously, everybody can get in a little better shape. You don’t want to come into camp in tip-top shape. You want to get into some better shape, playing shape, as you get into camp. So that’s natural that he’s going to drop about 4 or 5 pounds – not just him, but we have several guys like that, which is only natural. But as far as running the ball and playing in games, he can play right now.


Panthers HC Matt Rhule says they’re “nowhere near the point” of naming a starting quarterback. 

We’re nowhere near the point of evaluating who’s where. This was Baker’s second practice ever with us. I can’t really evaluate that yet,” Rhule said, via Ellis L. Williams of the Charlotte Observer. “I would expect to see things pretty much 50-50 for the immediate future. At some point, we’ll make some decisions. But I think that’s a long way off.”


Saints QB Jameis Winston is working his way back from a torn ACL he suffered last year, but he cautioned that “it’s still going to be a progression” for him. 

“Blessed and grateful,” Winston said, via “Grateful to be back out here with this team, grateful for another opportunity to come out here and play some football.

“It’s still going to be a progression, but I worked my tail off and I’m going to continue to do that.

Winston added that he’s been “more explosive” from where he was during minicamp.

“I would say I got more explosive (since minicamp),” Winston said. “I was good, I was ready to go right then. But it’s a progression. The healing process really never stops. I feel stronger right now, but with practice increasing, I know I’ve got to harp on a couple of things and continue to build.”

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