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January 14, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Pat Yasinskas

kyle (ct)

lets start early!

Pat Yasinskas
  (11:55 AM)

Sounds like a plan. Here we go.

Brandon Marcus (Alto, GA )

Mr. Yasinskas due to a work conflict I wont be able to log on for the chat but I do have a question as a life long Falcons Fan. What do you see them approaching as their biggest need area. Me and my uncle have differing opinions because I went with offensive line or corner vs his linebacker. Do they have a shot at the playoffs next year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (11:57 AM)

I'll go with a different answer than both o you. I'll say a defensive end. They need a pass rusher.

Stephen (Raleigh, NC)

Whats youre take on the Panthers QB situation? To me, Matt Moore looks like Jake circa 2005...manages a game, makes a couple of decent throws, and most importantly, gets the ball to Smith. Do you think we'll keep him on as starter or try to upgrade through FA or draft?

Pat Yasinskas
  (11:58 AM)

I think they've got to at least bring in someone to compete with Moore. Yes, he looked pretty good, but you still don't know for sure if he's the answer. If he is, great. But it would be nice to have another option to turn to i he's not the answer.

Jimmy (Boston)

Pat, do you think the bucs would try to move up and get Suh

Pat Yasinskas
  (11:59 AM)

Hang loose. He could be there at No. 3. Combine and private workouts can change a lot of things.

collin (lakeland, fl)

pat love the blog and wonder if there were any developments on resigning rudd or AB? Is Ab even worth the money after all his production due to injuries was still low and would he be worth the money to resign. do you think the bucs have a chance to contend next year in the nfc south since the improvement after morris took over play calling on D? thanks for your input and keep it up.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:00 PM)

AB is gone. Simple as that. They've got to go out and get a big-time WR for Freeman. Ruud may get resigned, but there's not a rush because he's still under contract.

Nick (Charlotte, NC)

Pat, ive heard in the past small rumors about the Panthers relocating out of the Carolina's, is this true? I love my Panthers and i want them to stay in Charlotte. I hope the Panthers stay with the Richardson family (after jerry decides to step down) so there will be no chances they relocate.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:02 PM)

Don't think you've got anything to worry about on that one. Richardson will keep them in Charlotte. Great stadium and a good an base. Besides, where would any NFL team go right now? There's not another venue ready to take on a team. If there was, the Jaguars already would be there.

nathanlowrey (columbia, sc)

if the panthers were to franchise tag peppers again, i know it would cost around 20 million. If we were to try and trade him once we tagged him, would whatever team that got him have to pick up that 20 mil, or could they give him a new contract entirely? because that could be a huge obstacle to overcome, if not.

Ricky (Naples, FL)

Hey Pat, I'm thinking Suh will be gone before Tampa has a chance to draft him. So how about Eric Berry? Talib, T Jackson and Berry...that sounds like that could be a dominating secondary for a long long time. Vote Berry!

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:05 PM)

No knock on Berry, but my philosophy is you don't take a safety in the top five. Got to get a DT.

Austen (San Antonio)

Pat, when i read that charolotte observer article about whether or not Peppers will return, it said that he was waiting for the Panthers to make their move and that the same circumstances of last year do not apply anymore. Does this mean that he may have changed his mind about staying, and is this because of the new defense Meeks implemented or something else?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:06 PM)

With Pep, I don't even try to read his mind anymore. He's a unique cat and I don't know what he really wants.

Brian (NOLA)

I know its early, but with Grant going on IR and 31, don't you think our number 1 need in FA or the draft is a pass rushing DE to pair with Will Smith? A great duo of pass rushers can cover up a weak OLB corp and help our secondary.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:06 PM)

Yep, absolutely.

Gary (Charlotte )

Pat, I enjoy your blog, but I have to disagree on one of your recent pieces. In your ALL NFC SOUTH TEAM you named Greg Williams defensive coordinator of the year, but I totally disagree with that and think Meeks deserves it far more than Williams. First the Panthers were ranked 8th in total yards allowed, where as the Saints were 25th. Furthermore the Panthers were 9th in PPG allowed, the Saints were 20th. Also the Panthers only had 5 less take aways than the Saints, which is even more impressive is that the Panthers finished in the + side of give away/take away after all the turnovers early, that has to be a credit to the Panthers D. Finally, it seems you were making a case for the Saints because of their injuries and early success on D. However the NFL is not 8 games, its 16 and no one cares what you did for a half a year, but for all 16 games. Meeks had just as many injuries as the Saints D. They lost Kemo day 1, lost a Pro Bowl talent in Thomas Davis, lost an array of Defensive tackles they picked up and the defense had a different starting lineup for 13 consecutive weeks and still finished strong where as Williams crew struggled down the stretch. I think that point alone makes Meeks the winner far and away.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:08 PM)

Points taken. Meeks certainly did a nice job.

Albert (Houston, TX)

Pat, give me a clear cut answer, what your prediction for the saints cards game?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:09 PM)

All right, don't usually do predictions. But I will make an exception since we're in the playoffs. Saints 41, Cards 38.

Jason Howland (Greenville, NC)

What do the Panthers do with Peppers? I know they want to trade him, but can they reasonably expect to get a first rounder in return? With Fox and Hurney signed on for another year, the Panthers seem unlikely to draft a QB for the future in the first or second round. I base this on Fox's stated beliefs about it taking too long to develop a new QB. So, with that in mind could the Panthers trade Peppers for a QB? If so, who do they go after? Kolb/McNabb? Cutler?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:11 PM)

Think they'll franchise Peppers again and then trade him. You're right on QB. Fox can't afford to draft one and wait for him to develop. I think you'll see them bring someone in to at least compete with Moore.

Vick (kentucky)

Rank the fan bases in the NFC South1= highest 4= Lowest

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:12 PM)

Come on, you're setting me up to get in trouble. All four fan bases are No. 1 in my book.

Bill (Laplace, LA)

Hey Pat, most "experts" seem to be picking the Cardinals to win, and are basically writing the Saints off. Do you think the Saints will use this as extra motivation?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:13 PM)

I'm sure that those predictions are hanging all over the locker room in Metairie.

Geoff (DC)

So if TB doesn't take Berry, Suh and McCoy are gone what do they do? How about Dez Bryant? Thanks

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:13 PM)

I think it's got to be one of those first three you mentioned.

Alan (NOLA)

PY, I know you strive for neutrality during the season. Now that there's only one NFC South team alive, and they've got a shot at the Super Bowl, can you afford to be just a little bit of a Saints Fan? More importantly... can I get a WHO DAT!?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:15 PM)

Well, I've got to remain impartial. But I will say it's good for the NFC South blog if the Saints keep winning.

james (houma, la )

pat, i know you don't do predictions BUT do you like the saints chances?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:15 PM)

I just gave my pick for this week: Saints 41, Cards 38.

CG (NOLA)

How big will it be to have Shockey and Greer back this week?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:16 PM)

Big. Greer especially.

Ray (NOLA)

Hey do you think Saints should pick up a FS to replace Sharper?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:17 PM)

They might already have that in Malcolm Jenkins.

God (Heaven)

What is the Saints' greatest drafting need... LB, DL, or DB??

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:17 PM)

DE.

Loney (East Texas)

Hey Pat just wanted to say it's been a pleasure reading your blogs every week. Geaux SAINTS

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:17 PM)

Thank you.

Jon (NOLA)

two words "Drew Brees"

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:18 PM)

Those are two great words.

nathanlowrey (columbia, sc)

if the panthers were to franchise tag peppers again, i know it would cost around 20 million. If we were to try and trade him once we tagged him, would whatever team that got him have to pick up that 20 mil, or could they give him a new contract entirely? because that could be a huge obstacle to overcome, if not.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:19 PM)

Most likely, another team would turn around and give him a new contract. $20 mil is too much for anybody to take on.

Ross (Greenville SC)

Do you think Delhommes time as the starter for the panthers is over for sure?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:20 PM)

Yes, sadly, there's no doubt about that.

Bill (Laplace, LA)

Pat, your answer to Vick about ranking the fans was spoken like a professional politician. You plan on running for office anytime soon?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:21 PM)

I've thought about it and have been to the John Fox School of Diplomacy for about six seasons. But it wouldn't be as much fun as this gig.

Trey (Charlotte)

Pat, do you think the panthers can turn it around next year...if so how?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:22 PM)

They've got a lot of talent in place. Need to get better play at QB, another WR and figure out what to do with Peppers. But no reason they can't be at least a 10-win team.

ac (orlando, fl)

do you think the bucs would really be silly enought to not sign antonio bryant? I mean he did say what he said about freeman and was unhappy about not getting the ball but lets be real hes the only #1 WR on the team and as of now there are no great wrs in FA

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:23 PM)

Mark my words, Bryant is gone.

Trey (Charlotte)

Do you see tim tebow being a good fit in carolina?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:23 PM)

No, sorry. Tebow was perhaps greatest college player ever. But he's not an NFL QB.

CG (NOLA)

In your experience, rank the loudest stadiums in the NFL?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:24 PM)

Well, from recent experience and headaches, I'd have to say Superdome. Seattle is pretty loud, too, when the Seahawks are playing well.

Sid (ATL)

Do you think TD and MS will actually upgrade the falcon's CBs? They were stubborn last year and Grimes and Owen played well at the end.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:26 PM)

Think you'll see another body or two in there, but it might not be anything dramatic. They like their guys and believe beefing up pass rush will solve a lot of problems in secondary.

Matt (Pensacola)

Will you be in the dome with me on Saturday?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:26 PM)

I will be there.

Adam (Mamou, LA)

Do you feel that having McCray replacing Grant will help the Saints get a better pass rush?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:26 PM)

Yep, at very least, it's not going to hurt.

chuck (north carolina)

hey Pat-does Musgrave leave atlanta? if so where to?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:27 PM)

From what I've heard, I think he's staying in ATL.

Ken (Tampa)

if the bucs go DT with their first pick what other posistions do they target with their 2 2nd rounders

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:27 PM)

WR.

Jason (Birmingham, AL)

Enough with the Saint slurping. They lost to the Bucs at home a couple of weeks back. Does anyone recognize that this team has zero playoff experience and defense wins games this time of year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:28 PM)

Saints fans, let's hear you.

John (Atlanta)

So if the Falcons are to take a defensive end with their first pick, who would you suggest? Anybody in college stand out to you this year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:29 PM)

Yes, think they've got to re-sign him.

John (Atlanta)

So if the Falcons are to take a defensive end with their first pick, who would you suggest? Anybody in college stand out to you this year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:29 PM)

Hang loose a bit. I haven't had a chance to really do draft homework yet.

Big Mike (NOLA)

Hey Jason. Most of these guys played in the NFC championship game in a couple years ago. And a few have superbowl rings.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:31 PM)

Actually there are only 11 guys left from the 2006 championship game. But there are a bunch of guys who've had playoff experience elsewhere.

dat man (louisiana superdome)

WHO DAT!? jason in birmingham dont be mad at us cause your team went 3-13

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:31 PM)

There, take that.

John (Charlotte )

Hey Pat, what about Antonio Bryant to the Panthers?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:32 PM)

Don't see it. Guy's had off-field problems and might be tough for him to co-exist with Steve Smith.

Kevin (Houston)

Pat, if you had to buy a bucs jersey today, which one would buy?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:33 PM)

#47, John Lynch. I know he's not playing anymore, but you can still find the jerseys at any store in Tampa.

Rickey Jackson (Just outside Canton, OH)

Pat, I'd like to thank you for your articles and the fans for their support in getting me this close to Canton this year. I'd still have to be considered a long shot for the class of 2010, but I'm glad that the case for my contributions to the game as an extroadinary pass rusher and team leader on an impressive defense are brought back to peoples minds. Maybe the exposure this year, and a good run by the Saints will help push me over the top next year. It would mean a lot for Saints everywhere to have my contributions recognized for what they were. Thanks, 57.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:34 PM)

Rickey, or a Rickey fan, I'm rooting for you.

ac (orlando, fl)

do you think barret ruud will be in a bucs jersey next year? If we trade him what do you think he might bring us?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:34 PM)

He'll be back.

Erik (Baton Rouge)

Is Robert Meachem a firm number two reciever now

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:35 PM)

Yes.

Cliff (Philly)

The year Tampa won the whole thing the Saints beat them twice, did Saints fans brag, no....get over it buddy the Saints play this weekend not Tampa.....no one wants to talk draft during the playoffs, sorry.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:36 PM)

Strong answer from Cliff.

Shannon (Baton Rouge)

You think the Saints are going to try to sign Sharper to a longer contract after this season?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:37 PM)

Yep, they almost have to.

Brian (Marion)

PY, Heard rumors that Panthers could possibly trade 1 of there RBs for draft choices or possibly a QB. Is this possible? I dont want double trouble going anywhere!!

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:38 PM)

I've heard the rumors too. But I think Fox would be very hesitant to trade either one. He realizes the importance of having two good RBs.

Michael (Goldsboro, NC)

Pat, do you see anything happening with the offensive coordinator situation in Carolina? I know a few players voiced their disapproval of Jeff Davidson (Moose comes to mind), and he has lost a lot of respect from the fans, but is anything actually going on behind the scenes that we don't know about?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:39 PM)

No, haven't heard anything along those lines. I've never been sold on Davidson at all. But Fox will probably stick with him.

Bill (Laplace, LA)

Pat, do you think that since Greer and Porter are healthy, Williams calls a large number of blitzes, or does he play it safe by rushing 4?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:40 PM)

I'm expecting a lot of blitzes.

John (Atlanta)

Do Saints even have a #1 receiver? Seems to me Brees spreads the ball around better than anyone in the league. This coming from a Falcons fan.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:41 PM)

Well, Colston is No. 1. But, you're right, Brees spread the ball around. There's really not much drop off from their No. 1 to No. 4 WR.

Dave (Columbus)

Pat, How many wins does Raheem need to get to keep his job next year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:43 PM)

7 or 8.

JJ (Dallas)

Is there any more festive and exciting game day venue than the Superdome?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:44 PM)

Not this year, anyway. Green Bay is also a great atmosphere, but in a different sort of way.

Erik (Baton Rouge)

What do the saints do with jamal brown next year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:45 PM)

Keep him. Bushrod and Strief aren't long term answers. If there's no new labor deal, Brown is only a restricted free agent.

William (California)

I think Ward Bryant and Clayton need to be gone next year?? What are your thoughts?? And i also think Caddy should get at least 25 Carries a game next year?? What do you think??

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:47 PM)

Yes, I'd unload all three of them.

Tee (Kenner)

PatEven with a 70% chance of rain for Saturday the Who Dat Nation will be louder than ever!!!! When have we been scared of a little rain!

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:47 PM)

Never.

Bill (Laplace,LA)

Pat, I have a feeling that Bush is going to have a big game. Am I delusional?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:48 PM)

No, I can see that too. The guy definitely has big-play capabilities.

Chandler (Outer Banks, NC)

Pat,What are (if any) the options to rid the Panthers of the ball and chain named Delhomme?Chandler

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:49 PM)

Talk him into retiring.

Cris (USA)

all proceeds from these games should be donated to relief for Haiti

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:49 PM)

Nice idea.

Scott (Maryland)

Do you see the Saints keeping Bell, Thomas and Bush? I would think Bush would be on the way out sooner or later. He may be the best reciever out of the backfield but not by much and the price tag is not a nice thing to carry.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:50 PM)

Don't be surprised if they restructure Reggie's contract.

Charlie (California)

Pat, great column. Curious as to why you don't think Matt Moore is the answer at QB. I saw him play and you did give him his props but you appear to be leery about him. Why?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:52 PM)

He showed some good things. But have we really seen enough to be certain he's the answer??? I think they have to at least have a strong alternative.

Rob (Australia)

What are your guesses on the futures of John Fox, Julius Peppers and Jake Delhomme in Carolina?What are your guesses on the futures of John Fox, Julius Peppers and Jake Delhomme in Carolina?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:53 PM)

Fox stays. Delhomme and Peppers go.

Matt (Pensacola, FL)

Pat, Look into your crystal ball and tell me who the Who Dats will play next Sunday?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:53 PM)

Vikings.

Emeril Lagasse (Delmonico's)

Pat, if you had to choose, which would it be; boiled crawfish, shrimp po-boy, oysters, soft shell crab, or none of the above?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:55 PM)

They all sound great. But I've had to stick with the club sandwich from room service all year because of stomach issues. But I'm scheduled for surgery right after the Super Bowl and, hopefully, that will allow me to enjoy the New Orleans cuisine next season.

Anthony (Concord, Ca)

Is Kellen Winslow missing the Pro Bowl a snubb? Why, Why not?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:55 PM)

Very nice year. But being on a bad team didn't help him.

Sam (Raleigh)

Should the panthers go for Vick?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:56 PM)

They won't. Jerry Richardson never would touch him.

Big Mike (NOLA)

The probowl is a popularity contest.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:56 PM)

No argument here.

Jim (Baton Rouge)

Pat, thanks for the NFC south blog all year, You've done a superb job.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:58 PM)

Thank you. It's been a pleasure. Y'all have been great and I'm looking forward to next year. Two more questions before I have to sign off.

dat man (louisiana superdome)

pat yasinskas.. best espn employee ever!

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:59 PM)

Send me an address, so I can send you your $20!!!

Patrick (Atlanta)

Hiatal hernia Pat? Just had that surgery. Worth it, but hurts a bit worse than advertised.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:59 PM)

Exactly. You're scaring me a bit. They've been telling me it's a piece of cake.

Breesus (Uptown)

Why did Brees lose by such a landslide to Peyton in the MVP category? Not to belittle his season, but brees statistically was the better quarterback in most categories. I feel as though the manning pedigree and the slightly better record won him a reward unfairly and if Brees wants to make a hall of fame case these slights of awards he potentially deserves will not be factored into his career.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:01 PM)

Not saying it's right, but the Manning name carries an awful lot of weight.

Bill (Laplace, LA)

I second what Jim said. Good luck with the stomach surgery

Bijon (Saint City)

What kind of role is Roman Harper going to play if the Saints are to be successful?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:02 PM)

Bigger than you might think. With the CBs healthy, I think Harper is a good player and can have a big impact.

Keaton (Myrtle Beach, SC)

There have been rumors that Osi Umenyiora wants out of NY, any chance that ATL would go that route to solve their pass rush woes?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:04 PM)

If he's out there, I'd grab him fast. All right, I'm past my cutoff time. Thank you all for stopping by. Always a pleasure.