Buccaneers TE Rob Gronkowski was happy to return to action Monday night.
“It was just good to be back out there with the guys,” Gronkowski said, via Pro Football Talk. “Just been working hard the last couple of weeks to get back, get in the grind and get back out on the field and play some games. It felt really good. Felt good to make some plays and get some first downs to help out the team. I think it went pretty solid. Can definitely improve, can definitely get a little bit better conditioned. Not running as much as I would if I was playing for the last couple of weeks. That was a good game to get under my belt and get better every week.”
- Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians said the team has to wait on G Ali Marpet‘s oblique strain to see if he can play this week. (Carmen Vitali)
Although the road team came away with a win, Washington HC Ron Rivera left Sunday’s game confident Panthers QB Cam Newton definitely still has more good years of football in him.
“Oh, s— yeah.,” Rivera said, via SI’s Albert Breer. “I mean, look at the weapons. Going into this game, we knew, it was Cam, it was (RB) Christian (McCaffrey), and it was going to be (WR) D.J. (Moore). And all three of those guys fricking scored against us, so we had that feeling and sense that it was coming that way. … There were a lot of things that he did that we expected him to do, it’s just, he does them well. And I will say this though, when he gets a chance to get a little more inundated in what they do as an offense, I think they’re gonna be even better, I really do. I like who this football team is, I think [Matt Rhule and his staff] have done a nice job here in Carolina.”
Saints QB/Swiss army knife Taysom Hill got his chance to be the starter in 2020 during a four-game stint when Drew Brees went down. Evidently, Hill didn’t show enough in that time for New Orleans to feel comfortable turning the keys over to him completely, as they brought back Jameis Winston who ended up winning a training camp battle for the starting job. Then when Winston went down, the Saints put the offense in the hands of veteran journeyman Trevor Siemian instead of Hill.
Hill’s four-year extension means he’ll be around for a while longer, though, and the deal leaves open the possibility that he’ll get another stab at the quarterback job, which is really his dream rather than his current do-everything role Saints HC Sean Payton loves so much.
“I think I’ve been transparent from day one about what the end goal has been here for me. So I don’t really know what to say other than you do your best to stay ready,” Hill said via ESPN’s Mike Triplett. “Obviously there’s this whole other role that’s there for me. So I’m trying to find a balance of staying ready to be able to do that job at a high level, but it’s not always the easy thing, because there’s this whole other expectation for me that I need to make sure I’m prepared to do. So I’m trying to manage that.”
- The Athletic’s Katherine Terrell writes that her impression from certain comments by the Saints’ coaching staff is that the initial plan was to have Hill be the starting quarterback in the event Winston got hurt, but Hill’s concussion changed things.
- Saints QB coach Ronald Curry told Terrell: “We knew that we needed a veteran QB that could go in, get us out of a game, and the following week would probably be Taysom’s show. That was the plan coming in.”
- Between the concussion and the bye week, Hill was out of commission for basically a month. Terrell notes the coaching staff hasn’t gone into detail on how this affected their decision to roll with Siemian as the starter but it had to play a role.
- NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero reports Saints sixth-round OT Landon Young needs season-ending foot surgery.
- According to Amy Dash, Saints CB Marshon Lattimore got probation for possession of a stolen gun while the felony charge was dropped.