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NFC South afternoon update

Let's take a quick run through some of the day's top headlines from around the division:

ATLANTA FALCONS

For those fantasy football fans that are curious about the knee injury that kept receiver Roddy White out of practice Wednesday, relax. Coach Mike Smith said it’s a minor injury and White is expected to return to practice Thursday.

CAROLINA PANTHERS

Linebacker Thomas Davis did some lobbying for coach Ron Rivera to keep his job. Davis said the coaching staff has been putting players into position to make plays, but players haven’t always come through. I think the players certainly deserve some of the blame, but the coaches haven’t been flawless either.

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

Quarterback Drew Brees said the NFL owes the players involved in the bounty scandal an apology. For what? Even former commissioner Paul Tagliabue, who vacated player suspensions on appeal, made it abundantly clear that the evidence showed the Saints ran a bounty program for three years. If you get out of a speeding ticket with only a warning, you're supposed to be thankful.

On a similar note, the lawyer for Jonathan Vilma said his client's defamation lawsuit against current commissioner Roger Goodell isn't going away.

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

Defensive end Michael Bennett said he’s keeping his options open as he approaches free agency. I’m not sure the Bucs are actively looking to hand out extensions right now. But I’m pretty sure re-signing Bennett will be one of their top offseason priorities. It’s not going to be cheap because Bennett has proved he’s a solid starter. But the Bucs, who will be getting Adrian Clayborn back from injury and also have Da’Quan Bowers, can have a nice trio of ends for the next few years if they keep Bennett.