NFC South Notes: Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers, Saints

     

Buccaneers

Buccaneers HC Bruce Arians explained that Tom Brady made it possible for the team to acquire TE Rob Gronkowski from the Patriots. 

“It was really Tom,” Arians said Thursday, via ESPN.com. “Tom brought it up to me, and I didn’t even think it was a possibility that [Gronkowski] wanted to come back. And [Brady] was adamant about, yeah, he really wants to play; he’d love to play with us. So [general manager] Jason Licht got the ball rolling with the Patriots, the conversation was there, and he’s working out, he’s in great shape and he’s raring to go. So we’re really looking forward to getting on the practice field.

Falcons

Falcons’ veteran C Alex Mack said he will decide at the end of the 2020 season whether to continue his NFL career. 

Going into Year 12, I feel pretty good and excited for it, ready to take it on,’‘ Mack said, via Vaughn McClure of ESPN. “I’ll play the year out, see how I feel — how my body works and how much I’m enjoying it — then make the decision at the end of year if I want to keep going or what. The future is unknown, and that’s the way I’m looking at it. Every year is one year at a time: keep going, prepare, and play, and do everything as best as I can. Then I’ll see where I’m at.”

Mack said he already contacted Falcons’ third-round OL Matt Hennessy and intends on helping him progress in the NFL.

“I told him like, ‘Hey, glad you’re on the team. I’ll help you as much as a I can,”’ Mack said. “And I don’t know. Will he play center in the year? Will I be out of the league? Will I be on a different team? Will I still be a Falcon? The future is unknown there. But it’s my duty to help him be as good as he can be. If he’s a teammate or a former teammate, if I can help the younger guys learn more, it only helps you. It makes me a valuable part of the team to be able to coach people.”

Mack, who is entering the final year of his contract, said he would consider re-signing with Atlanta if they are interested and he is healthy enough to continue playing. 

“If we have a really good year and do everything we want, and I feel great and they want me back again, absolutely, let’s do it again. There’s no real use in me worrying about it too much now. You take it as it comes. You play the year out and see where things are when it is time to make a decision.”

Panthers

Saints

  • Football Outsiders via ESPN lists cornerback as the biggest hole left on the Saints’ roster. While New Orleans is set for 2020, FO believes CB Marshon Lattimore will ask for more money in his coming extension than his coverage success rates indicate he’s worth and the Saints need to find a contingency to potentially allow them to let Lattimore walk.
  • Saints re-signed WR Austin Carr. (NFLTR)
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