Let’s take a look at some Saturday headlines from around the NFC South.
John DeShazier has a good column that points out the grievances by the NFL Players Association probably aren’t going to do a lot of good in getting suspensions from the bounty program overturned. One of the NFL’s main points is that commissioner Roger Goodell shouldn’t be issuing the discipline. Back when the NFLPA and the NFL were arguing their way to a labor deal last year, Goodell’s disciplinary powers were an issue. The NFLPA made some noise about wanting to have a panel that would issue discipline. But that didn’t end up being written into the new labor deal and Goodell kept his disciplinary powers. The grievances are a last-ditch attempt by the NFL to get this matter out of Goodell’s hands. I think it’s a real long shot that will happen. But the NFLPA has to try whatever it can because the suspensions probably have no chance of being overturned if they’re heard by Goodell.
Check out this editorial by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about the Falcons’ quest for a new stadium. This one’s a bit different than what you generally see on editorial pages when the possibility of taxpayer dollars being used to build a new stadium is discussed. This editorial points out that the reality in the modern world is that communities have to foot at least some of the bill when it comes to stadiums. That may not be what everyone wants to hear, but it’s the truth.
The Buccaneers made a very classy gesture earlier this week when they signed Eric LeGrand, who suffered a spinal-cord injury while playing at Rutgers in 2010. It was a symbolic move and it came because Tampa Bay coach Greg Schiano was at Rutgers when LeGrand was injured. Check out this fine piece by Mark Cook that details the bond between Schiano and LeGrand.
There were some reports earlier in the week that former LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson had signed with the Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent. Those reports were a little premature. Jefferson hasn’t signed yet. But that could happen soon. Jefferson is taking part in Tampa Bay’s rookie camp this weekend as part of a tryout. If the Bucs like what they see he could be signed soon.