We’ve gotten a sudden batch of news out of the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints, who hold their practices and media sessions later in the day than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers. In no particular order, let’s run through the latest.
Atlanta cornerback Dunta Robinson plans to appeal the NFL’s $50,000 fine for his hit on Philadelphia’s DeSean Jackson. I think Robinson at least has an argument because his head appeared to hit Jackson’s shoulder pads first. But I think the NFL was making a strong statement about the rash of big hits around the league Sunday and the chances of Robinson winning an appeal are probably slim.
Atlanta tight end Justin Peelle is out for four to six weeks after having surgery to repair a sports hernia. This is a bigger deal than you might think because the Falcons use a lot of two tight-end formations and Peelle is more of a blocker than starter Tony Gonzalez. Rookie Michael Palmer will have to take over Peelle’s role.
The Saints have placed cornerback Randall Gay on injured reserve because of recurring symptoms from a concussion. You have to wonder if Gay’s career could be over, although coach Sean Payton wouldn’t say anything close to that. This is a big loss. Gay was a quality nickelback, who could start for a lot of teams. His absence means rookie Patrick Robinson will have to continue taking on a bigger role.