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October 7, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Pat Yasinskas

Bill (Winston-Salem)

Panther beat writer Steve Reed pointed out last week that when Legedu Naanee was targeted by Cam Newton, "bad things happened". Why do you think he's still the number 2 WR for the Panthers?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:53 PM)

Good question and I agree with Steve from what I've seen. I've seen some promise out of LaFell. I think Panthers should just throw him in there and let him grow up with Cam.

RJ Singh (Tampa)

Any news on Safety Tanard Jackson?

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:53 PM)

Nope. Once again, if it's Friday and we haven't heard anything, he's not playing this week. If he comes back, it will be announced on a Monday or Tuesday. But still waiting.

tom (orlando)

Hi Pat. Did you ever find out what the Saints got from the Dolphins in exchange for Reggie Bush? I asked you about it last week, and you mentioned that you would find out and put it in the blog, but I don't remember seeing it. Thanks!

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:55 PM)

Haven't been able to get anything defnitive yet. I found the NFL's waiver wire from that day and all it has on there were that terms were "undisclosed". I will keep checking around.

Panthers Optimist (Los Angeles)

Hi, Pat. I know that you don't like to make predictions, but would it be fair to say that your expectations for these Panthers may have jumped up a bit after 4 solid games, most against tough competition? Mine sure have.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:57 PM)

Absolutely. I knew they'd be better and more interesting this year, but had no idea that be this much better and more interesting. Yeah, they're 1-3, but you can see a lot of good things. Think they'll be a scary team by second half of the season.

Chris (ATL)

Is Van Gorder on the hot seat? And if so, who would call the defense if he were let go sometime, say during the bye week? I could see it if the D has another meltdown with the Pack.

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:58 PM)

He's on the hot seat. But I doubt they would make a move during the season. Not saying this will happen, but it's not unheard of for a head coach to take over calling plays. Smith does have a defensive background.

clarence (atlanta)

what you think the falcons can do on defense to try to stop or maybe slow down rodgers and the packers W.R

Pat Yasinskas
  (12:59 PM)

Generating a pass rush would be a very nice start.

Quez (Muck Bowl, FLA)

Will Mason "the Monster" Foster get Defensive ROY??

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:00 PM)

He's doing well. But I think Ryan Kerrigan's the early leader for that. Plus, I think Foster's teammate, Adrian Clayborn, also is off to a very nice start.

Panthers Pessimist (Los Angeles)

Are there any signs that Carolina's defense will improve? This team could be 3-1 if they could stop the run.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:01 PM)

Hard to find a stud DT this time of year. Might have to wait for the offseason to address that. They thought they did, but Ron Edwards got hurt.

Michael (Atlanta)

Pat I was wondering if you were worried about how Roddy White has been playing? Do you think Roddy will get back to his pro bowl form which helped Atlanta so much last year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:02 PM)

Roddy has the talent to bounce back at anytime. Not sure he's completely healthy though. That thigh has been a factor.

Geraden (Orem, Utah)

Hey Pat! Love your blog! With Marques Colston coming back last week, you think Drew Brees might have tried to get him the ball a little more. It seems like Jimmy Graham is quickly taking over as New Orleans' number one target?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:03 PM)

They eased Colston in slowly. Think he only got 20 snaps or so. Expect he'll get more going forward.

Legarrette Blount (Tampa)

After our game monday night do you see my coaches centering the offense more around me seeing as when i get my touches my team ultimately does better?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:04 PM)

Maybe down the road, but Niners are pretty good at stopping the run.

Justin (Reading, PA)

With Mike Williams getting double teamed and Rejus not playing up to par, do you see the Bucs going out and drafting a wide receiver in the first round of next year's draft?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:05 PM)

Wouldn't say that yet. Give those two young guys a little more time. Plus, Preston Parker is emerging nicely.

Sam (Atlanta)

Pat do you have any information on if McClure will start this week or not?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:06 PM)

Nothing definite yet. We'll find out later this afternoon if he practiced today. But I'd say it doesn't look real good since he sat out Wednesday and Thursday.

Sam (tampa)

what game will you be at this week?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:07 PM)

I've got the Sunday night game between Packers and Falcons in Atlanta.

Rob (Hattiesburg)

What is the situation with Chris Ivory? I keep reading reports that he is healthy and ready. When will he play?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:08 PM)

He can come off PUP in a couple weeks and then they get three weeks to decide if they want to activate him or put him on IR for rest of the year.

Ken (NY)

What a difference one season makes! Last year the panthers had a respectable defense and a flat out awful offense. Now they have a very good offense and a flat out awful defense.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:09 PM)

Yeah, but if Edwards, Beason and Davis didn't get hurt, I think they would have been okay on offense.

Chris (Texas)

Should a Saints fan root for the Falcons to win in order to catch Packers for home field or root for Packers to keep Falcons down in division race?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:10 PM)

Hmmm, tough call. Guess you should root against Falcons because your first goal is to win the division. You might get help with the Packers from somewhere else.

David (Virginia)

Pat do you thinkt he Panthers will look to aquire Pat Williams to shore up the defense now that his suspension is over?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:11 PM)

I wouldn't rule anything out with them and DTs. But I've heard no indications they have made any effort to get him.

Adam (Connecticut)

What do you think of Gerald McCoy's performance so far? Also, it seems that Price has rebounded nicely from that injury and he has been very disruptive.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:13 PM)

Think McCoy had a very nice game Monday night. Price is definitely playing well and I think the presence of Price and Adrian Clayborn already is helping McCoy and will continue to do so.

D. Walker (Atlanta, GA)

Pat - I've kept up with the stats, and this year, when the Falcons have used the no-huddle offense, they: 1) tend to run a more balanced offense of run vs pass 2) gain more yards per rush 3) gain more yards per pass 4) have given up no sacks.Given that, what possible reason could you see that the Falcons haven't gone to the no-huddle more, if not permanently?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:14 PM)

I've been saying for a couple years that Falcons should go no-huddle all the time. Either that or take the batteries out of Mularkey's headset.

StShockey (Jackson, Ms)

Bobby Hebert coined JG's nickname to be "The Graham Reaper." Thoughts?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:14 PM)

I like it!

Ken (NY)

Will you be in Charlotte on Sunday?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:15 PM)

Not this Sunday. I'll be in Atlanta. Not certain yet, but looks like I'll probably be in Charlotte for Redskins game.

Will McDonald (Charlotte)

Pat if you're the Panthers coach what's your biggest concern? Lack of Run D, ST's or Red Zone efficiency? Which is the easiest to fix?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:17 PM)

Think the special teams and red zone can be fixed. The run D can't really be addressed until offseason because you need new personnel or you need to get the injured guys back.

Brandon Martin (UPS Driver (VA))

I see lots of people question Matt Ryans arm strength, yet I can recall times this year where he has out thrown his WR on the deep ball. Thoughts

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:18 PM)

Really don't think it's a question of arm strength. He might not have strongest arm in league, but he can throw it deep enough. Just don't think he's had a real chance due to poor protection.

Ashor Daniel (Ellk Grove Village IL)

Pat, Josh Freeman seems to not be lighting it up as much as last year, is it second year slumps or just that WR's not as productive as last year?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:20 PM)

Interesting question and something I wonder about. I'm not saying this is the case and have no knowledge of anything like this, but Scouts Inc.'s Matt Williamson wondered in our chat on Monday night if Freeman might have some minor injury that's impacting his accuracy. Again, just a theory by Matt, but it makes me wonder.

Chris (Charlotte nc)

Pat why wait until the Washington game.Last year you have been to Charlotte to more game then you have been this year.Where is the Love to Cam Newton and Ron Rivera Pat?

Lee (ATL)

Do you think Babineaux will play Sunday night?

Kirk (Myrtle Beach)

Which QB has the strongest arm in the NFC South?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:21 PM)

Freeman.

Ray (Charlotte)

you were critical of the Shockey move when it happened, perhaps you were quick to the trigger, Shockey seems to have something left and has helped Cam a lot.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:23 PM)

Yep, I'll fall on the sword on that one. But I didn't know at the time that they were going to add Olsen. That was important because it keeps Shockey from having to be on the field all the time. As a situational player, he's fine.

Chris (Charlotte nc)

Pat let me guess next week you won't be in Atlanta to cover the panthers game right

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:23 PM)

I don't make the travel schedule. I go to the game that's assigned to me.

Andrew (Pantherland)

Last year you said Smitty had regressed enough that Roddy White had surpassed him as the best WR in the South. That statement was premature, yes?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:24 PM)

Not at the time. But now, things are reversed.

Ashor Daniel (Ellk Grove Village IL)

Pat, it seems like the Bucs don't have a playbook in the first quarter, will this hurt the team down the road?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:25 PM)

They've got to start off better. You can get away with that against the Colts. Not against teams like the Saints.

Harry (Charlotte)

What do you think of the Panthers restricting media access to Cam? Obviously, you are not going to agree with it sicne you are one of them, but I think it's smart. Alot of people are eager to take things out of context, this just diminishes the possibilities.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:27 PM)

As a member of the media, I'm never in favor of limiting access. But I understand what they're doing. Lot of people in the organization regretted the way they handled Kerry Collins early on and I think that still factors into what they're doing with Cam.

Paul (NOLA)

best receiver in the division?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:28 PM)

Right now, Steve Smith.

Eric (Atlanta)

Too soon to label Ray Edwards a bust?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:28 PM)

Yes, gotta give him a little more time.

rickyg (louisiana)

Hey Pat,In your opinion, what NFC south team has the capability on defense to shut the Saints offense down?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:29 PM)

Have to admit Tampa Bay's young defense is impressing me of late. Not perfect yet, but lots of potential.

Ryan (Orlando)

Clayborn or Edwards

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:31 PM)

Hmmm, so far, I'd say Clayborn.

J (TX )

so I keep hearing that BVG is an aggressive play caller, but was just waiting to get the players that fit his system.... well, what's missing on defense now? we got a good D line, young and fast linebackers, and a better than average secondary.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:31 PM)

Agree, I think the talent is there now. But the results aren't. That's when you start looking at the coaching.

Razza (south Fl)

About your earlier blog regarding Shockey, sounds like he has some resentment directed all towards Payton. Do you know what their relationship is like now? They go back o long way

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:32 PM)

Don't know exactly, but Shockey's comments sure made it sound like their relationship is not what it once was.

Scott (Clayton)

Just a thought.....how good would Steve Smith be if he had a little more height to him like Marques Colston or Calvin Johnston?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:33 PM)

He was pretty darn good when Muhsin Muhammad was there. Moose was big, but not quite as big as those two.

Brandon (Vancouver)

The Bucs defensive line has been impressive, but Talib has been a bit of a disappointment. Last year he was getting about 1 pic a game. This year I only see him when he is getting lit up.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:35 PM)

Agree. Talib did not have a good game the other night. Beat in coverage, missed tackles and a penalty. KC Joyner, our Football Scientist, breaks down metrics on everything and he says Talib is having a terrible year. But the guy does have physical talent.

J (TX )

Don't you think that the falcons could do a better job of getting Jacquiz-rodgers involved in the offense? every time I see him run, it's between the tackles. I think he would be better off with outside runs that will put him 1 on 1 with a linebacker or corner in space.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:36 PM)

Yep, and I'd throw him some screen passes too.

Ken (NY)

Most surprising team in the NFC South?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:37 PM)

Surprising in a bad way -- the Falcons. I thought they'd be a lot better than they've played so far.

steve greens (Charlotte nc)

With the Falcons Bucs and Saints not looking real good right now.Do you think the Panthers can still make a run for the NFC South Title.Thanks

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:38 PM)

It's an uphill battle, but Panthers are definitely improved. And I think the Saints are looking pretty good. The Jacksonville game wasn't pretty, but you're going to have some games like that.

Hans (Charleston)

Have you heard anything about the falcons looking for a Bosher replacement?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:39 PM)

Not yet. They seem content to ride it out with him. Think that's because he's a draft pick. But they can't let it go on forever if he continues to struggle.

Busta Hammy (Charlotte)

What happened to Armanti Edwards? I thought he was showing signs in the offseason and now he's not even on the field on offense.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:40 PM)

Got to assume the coaches don't feel like he's ready.

John (Salisbury NC)

Bosher is the only punter in league that has yet to have a punt over 50 Yards, feel free to share.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:41 PM)

Sharing.

Eric (Atlanta)

What do you do before a game you attend? Do you want to come to a great tailgate Sunday afternoon?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:42 PM)

Wish I could, but I've got to monitor the other NFC South games and write about them. Will do early one from hotel and later one from Georgia Dome. Plus, I've got to be in there early for inactives and lineup changes.

Mark (Jersey)

Pat, After reading your article on Cam Newton's efficency with play action and seeing the great success that the Bucs have running the ball with Blount. Do you see Greg Olsen calling more play-actions

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:43 PM)

I think they should. And, with Blount starting to have success, I think they might.

Jack (Los Angeles)

Did you agree with the guy who said the bucs arent having a good year? Last I checked 3-1 is pretty good. Finding a way to win after the slow starts and a young D-Line getting better every game. I only see them gettin g better with each game. Not to mention the Panthers dont have a shot in hell!

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:44 PM)

No, 3-1 is a very good start. Their wins haven't been perfect, but a win is a win.

STEVE (PANTHER NATION)

Hello Pat, what do you think the Panthers chances of a nice upset this weekend with the Saints?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:45 PM)

If it happens, it would be huge for the Panthers. But it's not going to be easy.

J (TX )

Pat, it seems like we're in agreement on my two question. Great minds think alike. I thought you might like to know that I'm currently in the middle of my Criminal Procedure class, on a friday!!!! Thanks for this chat, and all the blog updates, they help me stay sane in law school. Last question, How much longer will the falcons stick with Matt Bosher? Mike Smith always talks about winning the field position battle, and we're losing in that department unless with get a new punter. BTW, Bosher is the only one with a 18 yard punt too. (share that)

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:46 PM)

Think they'll give him a few more weeks. Like I said, he's a draft pick and they don't want to give up on him. But he's got to turn it around pretty soon.

Rick (Statesville)

I know Cam is doing well, but I don't think they are running the ball enough. In my opinion that will create wins and help Cam be even better.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:47 PM)

Agree totally. Williams and Stewart are too good not to use more.

Joel (NC)

Any Bucs fan who thinks they're going to have 2 automatic wins against the Panthers hasn't seen them play. That is the truth

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:48 PM)

Might not be such a thing as an automatic win in NFC South this year.

J.P. (Kenner, La.)

Since everyone seems to have a take, what is your early impressions on TE Jimmy Graham?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:49 PM)

Very impressed already. And he's only going to get better. The kid doesn't have a lot of football experience.

jay (Lexington SC)

Any news on Brian Price injury from Monday Night?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:50 PM)

His agent told me he's fine and he wasn't on injury report this week.

J.P. (Kenner, La.)

Sproles > Bush! Agree?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:50 PM)

Not even a question!

Joel (Fort Myers, FL)

Just want to say to all the Falcons fans out there, thanks for letting the Bucs snag Koenen!

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:51 PM)

Think Atlanta fans would be thrilled to have Koenen back.

mike (okc)

Pat, i thought Donald Penn played very well against the colts' mathis and freeney, is he the best left tackle in the NFC South right now?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:52 PM)

He did very well the other night. If he's not best LT in division, he's a close second to Jordan Gross.

John (Salisbury NC)

Tony G continues to amaze me, can he do if for one more season ?!?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:53 PM)

Looks like he's physically capable. If he wants to play another year, I'm sure he could.

Richard (Ann Arbor, MI)

Panthers fans are decidedly confident and energetic today.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:54 PM)

Yes, they are. But I'll give them a pass. After what they went through last year, they should be enjoying their signs of hope.

Joel (NC)

Gross handled his business against Peppers and everyone else this year so far too

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:54 PM)

And Gross has been doing that for a very long time.

Mort (Rural Hall, NC)

Who's the best RT in the NFCS? I think Otah is when he is healthy.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:56 PM)

When healthy, yes. When not, I go with Clabo. All right, couple more questions before we wrap it up.

Eric (Atlanta)

Actually, Joel and Pat, as a season ticket holder since 1998, I can tell you that I am not sorry to see Koenen gone. Bosher's not great, but we can find someone who is. Not sure why but Koenen became less reliable over time. Just wait, he's hit one for 20 just when you need a 55, just like he did for us. Maybe we overworked him right a first when he was going to do all three for us, but trust me, he's not worth all that money. You'll see.

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:56 PM)

Interesting view from an Atlanta fan.

Richard F (Chicago)

Why didn't the Bucs bring in another option at running back through free agency or draft? It seems to me they are very limited if Blount goes down

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:58 PM)

Believe me, I thought strongly they should have done that. Know they made calls on Sproles and Bush, but not sure if they were ever serious players.

rickyg (louisiana)

Tracy Porter or Patrick Robinson - Who starts at corner and who goes to Nickel?

Pat Yasinskas
  (1:59 PM)

My guess is Robinson keeps starting.

John (Mission, TX)

Let Freeman throw deep!

Pat Yasinskas
  (2:00 PM)

Might help if they had a receiver who could get open deep. All right, our time is up. Thanks to all for stopping by. See you next week.