NFC South Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers

     

Buccaneers

The Buccaneers preached all offseason that the biggest thing QB Jameis Winston needed to do in 2019 was make better decisions and cut down on the turnovers. In his debut, however, Winston tossed three interceptions, two of which were returned for touchdowns. On one pick by Richard Sherman, Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians said initially it was a poor decision by Winston before backtracking. 

“After looking at the film, the biggest problem with the touchdown (on) the interception was Peyton (Barber) was about 3 yards too deep on his route,” Arians said via the Athletic’s Greg Auman. “Last night, I thought he was fine, but he was too deep. The ball was thrown perfectly. Mike (Evans) missed his hot (read). Jameis executed the play perfectly. The other two players let him down.”

On the second pick-six, Arians said Winston was under quite a bit of pressure but that’s still a pass that he should have known better than to throw. 

“I was fine with Jameis, other than the screen pass,” Arians said. “The screen pass, when the back didn’t get out, just throw it out of bounds. If you get a grounding, you get a grounding. But don’t leave it on the field of play.”

  • According to ESPN’s Jenna Laine, Buccaneers first-round LB Devin White has been dealing with tonsilitis.
  • Arians says Buccaneers S Justin Evans‘ chances of returning from injured reserve depend on if he needs surgery or not. (James Palmer)
  • Arians added Buccaneers RB Peyton Barber will remain the starter ahead of Ronald Jones, with the coach planning to go with whichever shows to be the hot hand. (Auman)
  • Panthers DT Gerald McCoy says he plans to sign a one-day contract with the Buccaneers when he does retire. (Joseph Person)

Falcons

  • According to Jason Fitzgerald with Over The Cap, the Falcons are currently projected to be over the salary cap in 2020. 

Panthers

The Panthers said during the offseason one of the goals heading into 2019 was to reduce RB Christian McCaffrey‘s workload, as the multi-purpose back played more than 90 percent of the team’s offensive snaps in 2018. So far, that seems like a pipe dream, as McCaffrey played 100 percent of Carolina’s offensive snaps Sunday against the Rams. 

“It’s tough to take him out,” Rivera said via Max Henson of the team’s official website. “The young man doesn’t want to come out. We have to think about certain things, but when he’s playing the way he is you’ve got to keep the rhythm going.”

  • Per David Newton, Panthers DT Gerald McCoy said it was hard to get into a rhythm given how much Carolina rotates its defensive linemen. McCoy played just over 50 percent of the defensive snaps Sunday after playing close to 70 percent for the Buccaneers last year. 
  • Panthers TE Greg Olsen (back), LB Bruce Irvin (hamstring) and S Rashaan Gaulden (groin) did not practice Tuesday. (Joseph Person)
  • Meanwhile, Panthers second-round OT Greg Little practiced as he works through the stages of the concussion protocol.
  • Olsen said his back was “jacked up” a bit during the game Sunday, and with a game Thursday “the short week is not ideal” for playing, though he still hopes to. (Person)

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