Hitting the NFC South links

Jeff Duncan writes the Saints had guard Carl Nicks working with the second-team offense Wednesday. I think Duncan’s right when he suggests the coaching staff is sending a message. Nicks is a very talented player and probably will be back in the starting lineup before all is said and done. But Sean Payton and his staff are very conscious of the fact their players need to work as hard as ever as the defending champions. This might be a message for the whole team.

Fantasy gurus Christopher Harris and Ken Daube debate if Pierre Thomas or Joseph Addai has more fantasy value.

Atlanta coach Mike Smith said defensive end Jamaal Anderson (knee) and cornerback Brent Grimes (groin) will be game-time decisions for Thursday’s preseason game. Just a guess here, but I’d say there’s no way the Falcons will put anyone who’s not 100 percent healthy on the field for a preseason game.

The Panthers officially wrapped up the camp portion of their preseason this morning. They’re done in Spartanburg, S.C., and will move back into their facility in Charlotte.