NFC South Notes: Buccaneers, Panthers, Saints

     

Buccaneers

When asked about Jameis Winston‘s tenure with the Buccaneers, HC Bruce Arians said 

“There’s so much good and so much outright terrible,” said Arians, via Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times

Winston feels he is still a strong player based on his numbers but must reduce his turnovers after throwing 33 touchdowns, 5,109 yards, and 33 interceptions in 2019. 

“You look at my numbers, I’m ballin’,” Winston said. “I got to stop giving the ball to the other team. I’m focused on how I can get better. Because I know if I eliminate those, I’m going to be the best. That’s bar none. You better check your sheet.”

Arians pointed out that Winston regressed in the last two games of the regular season, but believes his 5,109 yards and 33 touchdowns are a clear sign of talent. 

“I think it was that regression in those last two ballgames after he had made so much progress,” Arians said. “You don’t throw for 5,100 and (33) touchdowns and not have any talent. Those numbers are amazing in themselves. Those turnovers in December made us look to see if there was something better behind Door No. 2. We owed that to our owners and the rest of our football team to see, not thinking it was going to be Tom Brady.”

Arians added that had they not signed Tom Brady to a contract or missed out on Teddy Bridgewater, their third option was to re-sign Winston. 

“(Winston) didn’t work out for us only because Tom Brady was available,” Arians said. “And we had Teddy Bridgewater if that wouldn’t have worked out. If not, we were going back full steam with Jameis.”

Panthers

  • Aaron Wilson reports that WR Robby Anderson‘s two-year, $20 million deal includes  $10 million guaranteed with an $8 million signing bonus. His salaries are worth $4 million guaranteed and $8 million.
  • Zack Kerr signed a two-year, $3M contract with the Panthers that includes a $500K signing bonus. He’ll make base salaries of $910K and $1.075M and has $57,500 of annual workout bonuses and up to $200K in per-game active roster bonuses. (Aaron Wilson)
  • Juston Burris signed a two-year, $8M contract with the Panthers that includes a $2.1M signing bonus, He will make base salaries $910K and $2.779M and up to $490K per game active roster bonus in 2020 to go along with up to $520,625K per-game active roster bonuses and annual $600K workout bonuses. (Aaron Wilson)

Saints

As for re-signing veteran QB Drew Brees, Saints GM Mickey Loomis said the quarterback’s two-year, $50 million deal allowed the Saints to “improve our roster” and continue to field a “competitive team.” 

We needed to know what Drew is going to count on our cap this year, what resources are we using,” Loomis said. “Because that gives us the ability to do some other things. Look, to Drew’s credit, his No. 1 goal was to make sure that we had an opportunity to keep our roster together, improve our roster and be as competitive as we can be. I’m certainly appreciative of how he’s handled that contract the last couple of times, because the most important thing to him is that we have a competitive team.

Loomis added a “couple of deals” fell through because they weren’t able to obtain physicals on them. 

“Most of the work was fortunately already done before free agency began and then it’s just a matter of making calls, working deals and the only real logistical issue at the beginning of free agency was just that you couldn’t have face-to-face meetings, or you couldn’t bring in players for physicals,” said Loomis. “And a lot of times, after that initial rush, guys are looking for the right circumstance and situation and the teams are looking for guys that fit their building. And so a lot of times, those are face-to-face meetings where you bring someone in, you interview them, you talk with them, you discuss the vision that you have for them and if it’s a good fit – that really hasn’t been able to have happened. But we’ve adapted and the only real issue is the physical part. We’ve had a couple of deals that have fallen apart because of that.”

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