NFC Notes: Lavonte David, Bucs, Falcons, Saints

Lavonte David

  • The Athletic’s Greg Auman analyzes the situation with pending Buccaneers free-agent LB Lavonte David, who’s a key piece of their defense and someone Tampa Bay wants back. 
  • Auman says historically linebackers at David’s age (31) in free agency sign for around $9 million a year. David’s last contract was for $10 million a year, though, and Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner signed for $18 million a year at 29, so Tampa Bay likely will have to pay more than history would suggest. 
  • The Browns have been linked to David and Auman also writes the Dolphins are an easy team to connect the dots to given David grew up in Miami. Those two teams could be serious competitors for Tampa Bay in re-signing David. 
  • NFL Media Mike Garafolo clarifies one of his earlier reports and says the chances are much better than he gave the impression that David ends up staying with the Buccaneers. 


Although Falcons QBs coach Charles London is entering his first year coaching the position, he feels his experience as a teacher and ability to convey HC Arthur Smith‘s scheme is most important. 

I think really being a good teacher, being able to communicate the message and convey what the head coach is trying to spread through the team is really what a good coach can do, whether you played the position or not,” London said, via Jason Butt of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I’ve got a lot of experience with blitz pickups. I’ve got a lot of experience with the passing game with some work I’ve done as an assistant receivers coach. I’m very comfortable in the role. I look forward to working with Matt (Ryan) and the other quarterbacks we bring onto the roster. It’s going to be a good challenge.

London said he has experience coaching many types of players, including those who need frequent instruction and those who are quick learners. 

“There are guys who I’ve been around who you tell it to them once, they’ve got it and they can go execute it in practice and in the game,” London said. “Some guys need to hear it and then see it on the video and then they can execute it. Some guys need to see it, hear it and walk through it. It’s your job as a coach, regardless of what position you’re coaching, to figure out which way your guys learn. Everybody is going to learn differently.”

Falcons HC Arthur Smith also praised London’s ability to teach the game and develop players. 

“Charles is a phenomenal coach,” Smith said. “I think the biggest requirement for being a good coach is being a good teacher. Charles is a heck of a teacher. Looking at Charles in that role, it’s a role he wanted to expand and grow. … You want to expand people. You never want to stifle people’s growth. You’ve got to give somebody a shot. It’s a perfect situation with Charles, and I couldn’t be more excited he’s here with us.”


  • According to Nick Underhill, Saints S J.T. Gray‘s two-year, $4 million deal includes a $1 million signing bonus, $1 million guaranteed base salary in 2021, $1.6 million base salary in 2022 and a $400,000 roster bonus in 2022. 
  • Saints P Thomas Morstead said he wasn’t necessarily caught off guard when New Orleans released him Thursday as he lacked his usual “elite consistency” in 2020: “When you’re the highest-paid player at your position, the expectation is that you play at an elite level.” (Luke Johnson)
  • Morstead did admit to being a little surprised that the Saints didn’t approach him about a restructure or a pay cut. (Mike Triplett)
  • Oklahoma State OT Teven Jenkins is scheduled to have a virtual meeting with the Saints. (Justin Melo

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