NFC Notes: Falcons, Panthers, Seahawks



Panthers HC Matt Rhule made it clear that the team views Brady Christensen as a guard or center instead of a left tackle, due to lack of size and arm length.

“These snaps are really good just to see what position he is. We think he’s a starter. He’s had that rookie year where you’re kind of figuring out where you fit, how to play in the NFL. But his skill set, his explosiveness, his power, I think all those tell us that he’s a guy that’s a starter,” Rhule said, via Joseph Person of The Athletic. “It’s just a matter of putting that puzzle together. So I think these games are really important to go back and look at and say: ‘OK, is he our left tackle? Is he our et cetera, et cetera, et cetera?’ But he’s definitely something for us. I thought he performed well. He still has to work on some of his anchor in terms of when guys go to power rush — (Saints defensive end) Marcus Davenport and those guys are really good,” Rhule said. “I thought he was good in the run game. He was solid in the protection game. It was a good step.”

“Every time I go out there, no matter what position, I want to put my best foot forward. I enjoy just being out there, first and foremost,” Christensen said of his playing time as a rookie. “I love playing left tackle, too. I love that position. Obviously, still a lot of improvement to keep getting better. I’ve said it over and over again, but that’s what I’m really playing to — just keep getting better each week.”

One person who weighed in on the situation was former Panthers T Jordan Gross, who said there is no reason Christensen can’t play left tackle based on what he has seen.

“I don’t see how you can just automatically say, ‘Their arms aren’t long enough, so he can’t play,’” Gross said. “He looks like he’s doing a good job to me when I watch him, as a rookie playing that position. He’s the same size I was. Maybe my arms were a tiny bit longer. But he can jump higher and run faster than I did at the same age. If he can get the job done, he can get the job done. Bruce Campbell, a good friend of mine, you couldn’t build a better tackle than that. And he had trouble getting his hands inside and Mario Addison would double bull-rush him in his chest. Arms aren’t a get-out-jail-free card. Technique matters more the smaller you are because you’re not going to stop anybody just engulfing them with size. But I don’t see why (Christensen) couldn’t play tackle. To me, he’s big enough. It might not be ideal, but he’s definitely big enough. So I don’t really buy that. He just needs to go take the job. He’s got the chance. He’s playing left tackle. He’s played left tackle. Just be better than everybody else on the roster, and then you’re a left tackle. There’s no analytics in an ass-kicker, like, ‘That guy just kicks ass.’ Just show ’em. … If he can get it done, he can get it done. Because it’s not like you’re dealing with tiny individuals at guard. If he was 6-1, you probably can’t play tackle. But he can be the outlier. Why not?”’


Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner has no thoughts about retiring after this season or playing for a city other than Seattle.

“Not really, because in my mind I don’t feel like this is my last time,” Wagner said, via Brady Henderson of “I don’t feel like this is my last time putting on a Seahawks uniform. I don’t feel like this is my last time doing that. I understand there is a business side to this, but there is a lot of optimism on my end that I’ll be back. So I’m not worried about it. Obviously, I can’t control everything. I can only control my part. And my part on this is I feel like I love this city. I love this team. I love the Seahawks. So I always wanted to be a part of a franchise’s good times and bad times and every time. So this is a team that I would love to be able to be a part of for a very, very long time.”

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