It’s a little difficult to type as I deal with the goose bumps that come from the anticipation of Monday night’s showdown between Carolina and Philadelphia. But I’ll try to get through it.
Before we start talking Panthers and Eagles, let’s take a run through some other odds and ends from around the division.
Earlier Monday we saw some quotes from Tampa Bay offensive tackle Donald Penn that probably will end up in the Atlanta Falcons’ locker room when the two teams play in late December. Well, it turns out the Falcons might need to get a bigger bulletin board. Tampa Bay linebacker Adam Hayward told Ira Kaufman, “Their record says they're 10-1, but they're not a 10-1 team," among other things.
Good news for former Carolina defensive back Mike Minter, who truly was one of the classiest guys ever to pass through the NFC South. Minter will be the new football coach at Campbell University, according to Tom Sorensen. Minter had been working as the special teams coach at Liberty, and I have no doubt he’s ready to run his own program.
Miami defensive back Jonathan Amaya isn’t in the NFC South. But I see two division connections in this story about Amaya reportedly choking a cab driver. First off, Amaya previously was with the Saints. He came as part of the Reggie Bush trade, but later was released. Second, former Tampa Bay cornerback Aqib Talib pretty much set the precedent for incidents with cab drivers.
Mark Bradley has a nice summation of Atlanta’s situation at running back. He says it’s too early to say for sure if Jacquizz Rodgers is ready to take over as Atlanta’s feature back, but it’s nice to know there’s an alternative to Michael Turner. The Falcons obviously are giving Rodgers more playing time and more carries. I’d expect things to keep moving in that direction as long as Rodgers continues to produce.
Larry Holder reports that New Orleans defensive tackle Brodrick Bunkley will not face a suspension after he was ejected for kicking a San Francisco player on Sunday. But Bunkley still could face a fine from the NFL.