Time for a run through some odds and ends from around the division:
There’s apparent good news on the injury front. Cornerback Dunta Robinson (concussion) said he expects to be ready for the Jan. 13 playoff game. Coach Mike Smith already has said he expects defensive end John Abraham (ankle) and cornerback Asante Samuel (shoulder) to be ready for the playoff game. Safety William Moore hasn’t returned to practice after missing the final four games of the regular season with a hamstring injury, but the Falcons seem optimistic Moore will return soon.
Quarterback Cam Newton got banged up in the season finale. But the team said tests revealed no fractures of his ribs or ankles. That means Newton won’t be rehabilitating any serious injuries and should be ready for the start of the offseason program.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
Linebacker Jonathan Vilma took great exception to a story in which an anonymous player said defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo should be fired. What jumps out at me is that Vilma’s major problem seems to be with the use of an anonymous source. He doesn’t take advantage of the opportunity to dispute what the source said. Also, I don’t know that Vilma should be lecturing anyone about the use of anonymous sources. He seemed to be the benefactor of information from anonymous sources at various times during the bounty scandal.
Gregg Williams, who was at the center of the bounty scandal, reportedly has been fired by the St. Louis Rams even though he already is suspended indefinitely. If St. Louis coach and longtime Williams friend Jeff Fisher is giving up on the defensive coordinator, I think it’s a long shot Williams will ever return to the NFL.
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
The Bucs have signed eight players to futures contracts. Somehow, I don’t think quarterback Adam Weber is the guy coach Greg Schiano was talking about when he said the Bucs could bring in some competition for Josh Freeman.