Around the NFC South

Time for a morning run through the headlines from around the division:


Coach Greg Schiano said he still is evaluating his coaching staff, according to Roy Cummings. That means there still is a chance there could be changes to a defensive staff that didn’t produce great results. On offense, the Bucs already have openings for a receivers coach and a quarterbacks coach. John McNulty, who coached for Schiano at Rutgers, has coached both of those positions in the past. But the Bucs might be waiting to see what happens with offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan, who has interviewed for the head coaching job in Chicago. If Sullivan leaves, McNulty would be a logical candidate for that spot.


General manager Mickey Loomis said it’s up to coach Sean Payton to make any changes on the coaching staff. Payton is suspended until after the Super Bowl. There’s been some speculation that defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo could be on the hot seat after his unit ranked last in the league. But I think Spagnuolo sticks around. He was Payton’s hand-picked guy last year.


Tom Sorensen writes that new general manager Dave Gettleman isn’t a flashy guy. That fits the Panthers’ way. It also sounds like Gettelman’s personality is a bit like former general manager Marty Hurney’s. That’s not a bad thing. Hurney was low-key and didn’t have a big ego. For a lot of years, that personality fit well with the Panthers.


Television analyst Jimmy Johnson believes the Falcons are ready to take the next step and win a playoff game. I feel the same way. I’ll explain my reasoning in a column that’s coming a bit later on.