- Pat Yasinskas, ESPN Staff Writer
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New Orleans interim head coach Joe Vitt is meeting with the local media right now. It sounds like he’s addressing the bounty situation, the offseason program and lots of other things. We’ll have more on that after Vitt wraps up.
Meantime, let’s take a quick run through some headlines around the NFC South.
Louisiana state police and the FBI are conducting a joint investigation into allegations that New Orleans general manager Mickey Loomis had the ability to listen to opposing coaches during home games from 2002 through 2004. Loomis and the team have strongly denied the allegations.
Bradley Handwerger writes that the Saints have a public-perception problem on their hands, and they now are viewed as guilty before having a chance to prove their innocence. How do they start getting people to view them in a more positive light? Well, I think that’s going to be a process. But one good way to start that process would be to get quarterback Drew Brees signed to a long-term contract.
I’m not a big believer in the alleged “Madden Curse’’. But, apparently, a lot of people are. Here’s a very thorough story on the economic impact of the curse. Keep this in mind, because the Madden 13 Cover Vote ends Wednesday and all indications are that the voting is very close between Carolina quarterback Cam Newton and Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson.
Carolina general manager Marty Hurney and coach Ron Rivera reportedly traveled to Chapel Hill on Monday to meet with North Carolina defensive end Quinton Coples. I’m not sure exactly what to read into this, and I’m not ready to go ahead and say Coples will be Carolina’s pick at No. 9. But I do think it’s important to note that Hurney is not the type to play games and send out smokescreens. If he took the time to have this meeting, I’d guess there’s a very real chance Coples could be the pick, if he’s available at No. 9.
Here’s an overview of Mark Dominik’s draft classes since taking over as general manager of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. I guess it’s fair to say the jury is still out. But I also think it’s fair to say the upcoming season is a crucial one for Dominik picks such as Josh Freeman, Gerald McCoy and Brian Price. If they play well, Dominik’s draft history suddenly will look a lot better.