NFC South Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers



  • Per Scott Smith of the official team website, Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians expects TE O.J. Howard to return to the lineup this week. 
  • Arians said Buccaneers RB Ronald Jones has earned the right to start and play more snaps over RB Peyton Barber, who has been good but not as explosive as Jones. (Smith)


  • Per Kelsey Conway of the team website, Falcons HC Dan Quinn said newly-assigned secondary coach Raheem Morris will focus on technique and communication as points of emphasis. 
  • The Falcons announced three coachings changes on Monday. (NFLTR)


As the Panthers received another murky update on the status of QB Cam Newton, his former backup Kyle Allen led the team to another win on Sunday, helping guide Carolina to a 30-20 win against the Titans a week after getting annihilated by the 49ers. Part of why the team has been impressed with Allen is the way he’s handled the situation with Newton, continuing to work hard in preparation for each week despite not knowing when or if he’ll have to give up his starting role. 

“Cam has a leadership role in locker room,” Allen said via Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. “I’ve taken on that leadership role as well as I’ve been playing, and we’ve been winning. Me and Cam have a great relationship. Whatever is going to happen with him is going to happen. For me, I just get ready to play every week just like I was Week 1 and Week 2, when I wasn’t starting. [Cam is] going to get it figured out. He’s going to get healthy, and I’m excited for him to be healthy. For me it’s about being prepared every week and helping this team win.”

  • Because Newton’s foot still needs several weeks to heal, NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport says he could be placed on injured reserve early this week. 
  • Panthers HC Ron Rivera said Allen would start again this week against the Panthers and Newton was continuing his rehab: “I have nothing further to add.” (Jourdan Rodrigue)
  • Rivera mentioned the team has some concern about CB James Bradberry‘s groin injury. (Joseph Person)

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