With changes at offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, it's been an offseason of transition for Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's D. Orlando Ledbetter examines how the installation of the new offense has gone during organized team activities and minicamp.
Ryan hopes the extra seven pounds he's added this offseason in the weight room will help him weather the pounding of a full season, writes USA Today's Jim Corbett. "My frame could have used the extra seven pounds for a couple of years," Ryan said. "I've gotten stronger and hopefully more durable."
Wideout Roddy White approves of the direction the new offense is going, according to the team's official website. “We look real good right now, I’m not going to lie,” White said of the offense. “The past three or four years, this is the best I’ve been around since I’ve been here and seen the cumulative group on the field.”
Back in January, Steve Smith became the NFL ambassador for Samaritan’s Feet, a Charlotte-based non-profit that provides shoes to needy children. On Saturday, the Panthers wideout was in his hometown of Los Angeles to help wash the feet and put new socks and shoes on more than 500 of the city’s homeless.
New Orleans Saints
Former Saints linebacker Scott Fujita said he sees elements of a "smear campaign" in the investigation into the Saints bounty scandal, reports the Associated Press.
The bounty scandal has "roiled the Who Dat Nation like nothing before, stirring the defiant streaks seemingly embedded in the DNA of its constituents," writes Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Buccaneers were often undone last season due to "poor execution of fundamentals," writes The Tampa Times' Stephen F. Holder. So, not surprisingly, the Bucs have focused this offseason on brushing up on those fundamentals, particularly on tackling and ball security.
The team has signed offensive tackle Mike Ingersoll -- a 6-foot-5, 300-pounder out of North Carolina. To make room for Ingersoll, the team released linebacker Antonio Leak.