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Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Around the NFC South

By Pat Yasinskas

First a quick note to let you know that the All-NFC South midseason team will be coming shortly. Keep checking back. Meantime, let's take a stroll through the division's top headlines:

ATLANTA FALCONS

Complete with pictures that show a great block by receiver Roddy White, D. Orlando Ledbetter has a breakdown of the 43-yard run by Michael Turner that was a huge turning point in Sunday night’s victory against Dallas.

Although they haven’t been perfect, Mark Bradley writes the Falcons have become a target for criticism by keeping their heads above water and getting to 8-0. He’s right. It’s easy to pick apart what the Falcons have and haven’t done. But they do deserve plenty of credit for being the league’s only undefeated team.

CAROLINA PANTHERS

Scott Fowler has his list of bests and worsts from the first eight games. I think you can tell what kind of season the Panthers are having simply by the fact that the best play was a catch by Armanti Edwards, who has barely played in three seasons.

Tight end Greg Olsen’s infant son, TJ, came home from the hospital Tuesday after having heart surgery.

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

Nakia Hogan writes that both interim coach Joe Vitt and coordinator Steve Spagnuolo said the attacking style of defense the Saints played Monday night against the Eagles might have been just a temporary thing. It worked nicely against struggling quarterback Michael Vick and a banged-up Philadelphia offensive line. But blitz too many times against the Falcons, the next opponent on the schedule, and the Saints could get burned badly.

Former New Orleans safety Steve Gleason, who was taken from Monday night’s game to the hospital after experiencing flu-like symptoms, was released and is feeling better, according to a spokesman for his charity.

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

Gary Shelton writes that general manager Mark Dominik, who drew a lot of criticism last year, suddenly is looking like a genius. That’s the nature of the NFL. You lose, you’re going to get criticized. You win, you’re going to draw praise.