NFC Notes: Buccaneers, Panthers, Saints


In several posts on Twitter, Buccaneers DT Ndamukong Suh reflected on his time spent with the Miami Dolphins from 2015-2017 and how his attitude with the organization created “divisions on the team.” 

EQ (Emotional Quotient) is one of the most important traits I look for in people. But for many, it’s seen as less valuable than IQ. This is not true. Here’s the story of how I learned the importance of EQ, the hard way in Miami. If you’ve watched me play, you know I can be a lot of in your face. I’m a very direct person by nature. My job is entirely about imposing my will on others. So that bleeds into other aspects of my business. For a long time in my career, I was always just saying what I wanted to say. Never thinking about how I delivered the message. Everything changed when I got to Miami. I was in a strong, influential position. So I was just making my opinion known, regardless of how it impacted others. 2 years in, I realized this attitude was: – Creating divisions on the team. – Pushing people away. – Putting me in a negative headspace,” wrote Suh. 

Suh explained that he “disagreed with everything” under Dolphins’ former HC Adam Gase after his addition in 2016, which forced the defensive lineman to reassess how he worked with people. 

“Then along came our new coach. I disagreed with everything he wanted to do. But…nothing I said was being heard. I couldn’t get the support I wanted. I realized it was because I had 0 tact. If you’re not careful about how you do things, you end up being the bad guy. So what did I start doing that I still do today? 1. I listened way more than I talked 2. I paid attention to HOW I interacted with people 3. I observed other’s reactions and adjusted as needed 4. I chose my words carefully to be more empathetic,” added Suh. 

Suh thanked Miami for the lessons he learned while with the organization. 

“It was a total 180. There was less arguing & more agreements. I turned my influence on the team into impact. But most importantly, I felt better about myself and my mood improved. Since then, I’ve never forgotten how much EQ matters. In business and life, being sensitive to others always brings better results. Don’t just think about what you want. Think about what others want. TAKEAWAYS: – Listening > talking (we have 2 ears, 1 mouth) – Observe other’s reactions to you closely – Assess yourself and be self-aware, always improve – Think before speaking (esp. in disagreements) I promise you’ll see way better outcomes in your relationships. Thanks Miami!”


Panthers S Jeremy Chinn was originally listed as a linebacker by the organization after selecting him in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft. He explains that he entered the league with an open mind on his position.

“After getting drafted, back at home at this point, we didn’t have the OTAs and rookie minicamps. I actually would talk to [Panthers DC] Phil Snow quite frequently, and he told me that he had plans for me starting early. He didn’t really have a position for me other than linebacker or safety and said I had a flex position… I said, ‘Whatever it is, I’d be ready for it,'” said Chinn, via SiriusXM NFL Radio.


As the Saints’ VP of football administration, Khai Harley‘s main job is managing the salary cap. It’s one he does exceptionally well. However, Harley revealed he’s also being cross-trained in a few areas, including evaluating players. 

“Ever since I’ve been here, I’ve been involved in personnel so, you know, it’s not something that’s been publicized or that people know. … I’m not a self-promoter. It’s one of those like, the squeaky wheel right? Well my wheel isn’t squeaky. My wheel is oiled pretty well,” Harley said via the Athletic’s Katherine Terrell. “And I’m just a spoke in the wheel in trying to help our club do the best that we possibly can.”

The Saints have had some notable executives interview and leave for other general manager positions. Harley is a strong candidate to be next, as he rounds out his skillset with personnel evaluation to complement what is already top-notch work with the cap. 

“I’m involved in all of our personnel decisions and all of our personnel meetings and I have done some of the evaluation in the past and during the course of my job.” he said. “But at the same time I have a high respect for scouts and what they do, and it’s why I say that I’m not a scout. I think there’s a difference in being a scout and being an evaluator. Part of what makes scouts what they are is the volume of what they do. The volume of players that they’re able to review and look at and have a knowledge base to compare to. When you have other responsibilities, there’s just not that many hours in the day to review as many players as a scout would review.”


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