NFC South: Lee Ziemba

Around the NFC South

October, 28, 2012
Let’s take a quick look at the top Sunday morning headlines from around the NFC South:


Bradley Handwerger has an extensive feature on Joe Vitt, who after serving a six-game suspension will have his first game as coach of the New Orleans Saints on Sunday night in Denver.

Former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue has postponed the appeals hearings on player suspensions in the New Orleans bounty saga that were scheduled to be held Tuesday. The hearings were to be heard in Washington, D.C., but Hurricane Sandy is supposed to impact the region. No new date for the hearings has been set.


Carolina reserve offensive lineman Lee Ziemba, who already is on injured reserve, issued a statement saying he will face a four-game suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Carolina coach Ron Rivera has been getting a lot of criticism from fans for his calm demeanor. They say he’s too laid back. Rivera said that’s about to change and he’s going to start showing more emotion. I’ve admired Rivera’s steadiness. But let’s face it: Rivera is fighting for his job and it might be time for him to make some drastic changes.


Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan, who was raised in suburban Philadelphia, is looking forward to his homecoming against the Eagles.

Speaking of homecomings, Atlanta cornerback Asante Samuel said he expects a warm welcome from the Philadelphia fans. Samuel spent the previous four seasons with the Eagles before a trade to the Falcons. But I’m not sure if Samuel was joking about the greeting he expects to receive. Philadelphia fans aren’t known for their warmth.

Inactives for Panthers and Redskins

October, 23, 2011
CHARLOTTE -- The Panthers and Redskins just announced their inactives for Sunday’s game.

For Carolina, quarterback Jimmy Clausen, safety Jordan Pugh, running back Mike Goodson, tight end Richie Brockel, linebacker Omar Gaither, tackle Lee Ziemba and defensive tackle Frank Kearse are inactive.

For Washington, receiver Donte Stallworth, safety Oshiomogo Atogwe, cornerback Byron Westbrook, tight end Chris Cooley, linebacker Markus White, tackle Trent Williams and defensive lineman Darrion Scott.

NFC South links: NFLCA surprises Rivera

June, 3, 2011
Atlanta Falcons

Fox-5 in Atlanta has video of some Falcons players -- including Stephen Nicholas, Bear Woods and Harry Douglas -- working out with area children.

The American Institute for Stuttering will host a benefit gala honoring Falcons owner Arthur Blank.

Carolina Panthers

Seventh-round draft choice Lee Ziemba isn't too worried about the lockout. “I feel like it’s all going to get worked out in the end. I’m not too stressed right now about it,” Ziemba said.

Coach Ron Rivera was as surprised as anyone when the NFL Coaches Association filed a brief with the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals supporting the players in the NFL's ongoing labor dispute.

New Orleans Saints

The Saints ranked No. 2 in's NFL organizational rankings, which grades teams based on six categories -- owner, quarterback, head coach, front office, coaching staff and intangibles. The Falcons were No. 8, the Bucs 13th and the Panthers were 31st.

First-round pick Mark Ingram is striving to make an early mark with the Saints.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The attorney for cornerback Aqib Talib will ask for a quick trial in his case of an alleged assault with a deadly weapon. In an interview with, fellow cornerback Ronde Barber described Talib as "a great teammate ... a fun-loving, kind of gregarious guy" and that the team is "somewhat responsible for him."

The Bucs signed their longtime radio play-by-play man, Gene Deckerhoff, to a two-year contract extension.

Around the NFC South

May, 8, 2011
Time for a quick trip through the Sunday headlines around the NFC South.

The addition of defensive ends Adrian Clayborn and Da'Quan Bowers and linebacker Mason Foster should do more than help Tampa Bay’s pass rush. Stephen Holder writes that each of the three rookies has the ability to play the run well.

James Varney has an in-depth profile of New Orleans rookie defensive end Cameron Jordan.

The Saints were convinced he’d be gone before they got to pick at No. 24, but he somehow made it that far.

D. Orlando Ledbetter has a projected depth chart for the Falcons. This one’s unique because Ledbetter went ahead and made a huge free-agent signing, defensive end Ray Edwards. We’ll see if general manager Thomas Dimitroff does the same thing whenever free agency opens, but I think it’s possible.

When the Panthers drafted Lee Ziemba in the seventh round, one of the first congratulatory text messages came from new Carolina quarterback Cam Newton. The two played together at Auburn, where Ziemba protected Newton’s blind side from left tackle. Although he had a very productive college career, Ziemba tumbled in the draft. Some said there were concerns about a surgically-repaired knee. Others said it was because Ziemba’s pre-draft workouts weren’t very impressive.

It’s been reported the San Diego Chargers are one team Carolina receiver Steve Smith would like to be traded to. Makes sense, because Smith is from the Los Angeles area. This might be more than wishful thinking on Smith’s part. Although nothing can happen while the lockout is in place, it sounds as if the Chargers might have some interest.