Falcons QB Marcus Mariota plans to work harder in order to help TE Kyle Pitts have better production during the remainder of the season.
“First and foremost, I can do a better job of giving Kyle more opportunities with the ball,” Mariota said, via Pro Football Talk. “I think sometimes I’ve been a little too safe, a little too conservative where I’m putting the football, so giving him a chance to go get it. I think that’ll help some of his target numbers.”
“I think it comes down to me, I just got to give those guys a chance,” Mariota added. “Guys are finding a way to get open and sometimes it’s not necessarily the perfect throw. I think coming back in this season I’ve kind of tried to flush that perfectionist in me, that’s probably what my last hurdle is. I think some of those deep shots have always been — the kind of guy that wants the guy to just kind of catch it on the run, but with the guys that we have, the players that we have sometimes it’s giving those guys just a chance to go up and get it. I’m working on those things, those are things that we go out there and practice, so hopefully, that will transcend onto the field.”
- The Falcons have ruled out CB AJ Terrell and TE Feleipe Franks for Thursday Night Football. (D. Orlando Ledbetter)
Panthers interim HC Steve Wilks explained why he’s sticking with QB P.J. Walker as the starter this week despite a horrid outing against the Bengals.
“We all have bad games. P.J. wasn’t the only one. We’ve gotta play on Thursday. I can bench everybody if we go off bad games,” Wilks quipped via the Athletic’s Joe Person. “We’re gonna rally behind P.J. and definitely give him the things he needs from a game-plan standpoint, that he can go out and execute.”
That leaves Panthers QB Baker Mayfield on the bench again even though he’s recovered from his ankle injury. It’s not what Mayfield likely envisioned when he arrived in Carolina but he’s saying all the right things in public and Wilks isn’t saying if that’s different behind the scenes.
“I’m not gonna get into the state of how guys handle certain situations,” Wilks said. “We talked as men, and I told (Mayfield) exactly what I thought. I would say Baker’s a competitor, just like Sam. They all want to start and they all want to play. I know he’s gonna continue to be a pro, as he’s been.”
- The Panthers have ruled S Juston Burris and WR Rashard Higgins for Thursday Night Football against the Falcons. (David Newton)
- Saints HC Dennis Allen said CB Marshon Lattimore (abdomen) is progressing from what he called a painful injury but did not provide a timeline for his return. (Nick Underhill)
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