Hey Pat what are the odds the bucs resign Bennett?
Pretty good, I think. They like him. They've got plenty of cap room to work with and they've got a two-month head start on everyone else to get him signed.
I read your article yesterday previewing the Sea. Atl. game. You seem to think Russell Wilson is going to get affected by the crowd. I completely disagree, he already has a playoff win in a hostile environment and he has played at the loudest stadium all year...are you even nervous for this game?
No doubt Russell is incredibly poised and he has done some good things on the road. Was just saying I think it still is tough for ANY rookie to go into the Georgia Dome -- or any road venue -- for a playoff game.
Hey Pat, Mike Shula next Panthers OC?
That's what I would do.
What do the Bucs plan on doing with LaGarette Blount?
Probably put the restricted tender on him. Maybe they can get a draft pick for him that way. If not, he can stay as an inexpensive backup.
I think it's safe to say that the Buccaneers will be exploring options in free agency for the cornerback position. With the 2013 free agent class having considerably good depth at corner, do you think Mark Dominik will make an attempt to sign Brent Grimes away from Atlanta much like he signed Carl Nicks away from New Orleans?
Let's wait and see if Grimes gets to hit free agency. I'm sure Falcons will make an effort to keep him.
Hi Pat, I asked you last week if Norv Turner was a possibility for the OC job in Carolina and you replied "Are you ready to get rid of Chud already?" LOL funny how things change. So i now ask again is it a possibility and why would Norv choose to follow Chud to Cleveland when the Panthers have much more talent to work with and are closer to being a playoff contender? Thanks
Yep, still surprised Chud got that job. On Norv, I think Cleveland is going to give his son a job as a position coach. Plus, Rivera's job security isn't great. He clearly is on hot seat. Norv might not want a job where he could be gone after one year.
I believe the Falcons win this game BUT if not Smith may be in some trouble. With the stadium issue in limbo it's critical they win at least 1 game. The org needs some goodwill b/c the public funding issue is not going over well.
Agree, I doubt Blank would fire Smith if they lose. But he'd go into next season with enormous pressure. He'd pretty much have to win it all next year.
i hear talking about its time to breakup the backfield of the panthers but wouldnt it make more sense to trade beason and gamble since our defense was pretty good and chicago and the ravens both are going to be looking 4 a middle linebacker and what do u think we could get for them
For Beason, you might get something like a third-round pick. Doubt there would be much of a trade market for Gamble. Don't think many teams would want to give up anything for a 30-year-old (or close to it) CB coming off injury who has a big contract. Teams know Panthers may have to cut him, so they'd just wait.
Any inside info on JA55 for the Falcons?How is he health wise?
Think he's fine. He's been practicing. I'll have the final injury report a bit later this afternoon, but I fully expect Abraham to play.
Who do you think the Saints should target with their first round pick in the draft?
Too early to zero in on a specific player, but I think it has to be a defensive lineman.
Do the Falcons need their running game to be clicking in order to win this game?
I think they should come out throwing the ball all day. Forget about forcing a running game that's not there.
Leading up to this weekend's game there's been a lot of talk of Sherman/Browner vs White/Jones, and Marshawn vs ATL's D, but how do the Falcons corners and safeties match up against Sidney Rice, Golden Tate and Zach Miller?
Think ATL's secondary matches up nicely. Think Falcons' secondary is better than people give it credit for.
What are some of your regular restaurants/establishments when in ATL? I assume you stay downtown... which is unfortunate.
Nope, I stay out at the airport and order room service.
Pat, I'm nervous as can be dude. We have to win this game for the players, for the franchise, and most importantly for us crazy fans. The Seahawks match up perfectly in every respect - physical running game, game manager at QB that can break the occasional play open, and a stout defense that doesn't allow people to score. COMFORT ME PAT. I NEED SOMETHING POSITIVE TO THINK ABOUT!!!
Take deep breaths. If Falcons play to their full ability, they should win. That' the best thing I can tell you.
With the hiring of Gettleman does he have a good history of picking players in the draft? We are going to need an extremely good draft class this year to make up for the many losses we are going to have?
Gettleman has NO history of picking players in draft. He' been a pro personnel guy, not a college scout.
Hey Pat are you surprised that JR decided to keep RR especially since they were bringing in a new GM?
Not really. Think JR likes Rivera and thinks he can be a good coach. Winning the final four helped a lot.
Hey Pat, hear me out for a minute. The "Paper Falcons" will be anything but this month and here's why. Week 1 @KC, nothing's decided. They blow out KC. Week 2 vs. Denver, something to prove under the lights vs. Peyton. 3 picks, W. Week 3 @ SD, opponent undefeated, 27-3. Week 8 @PHI, the Eagles were "finally gonna turn it around" w/ Reid 13-0 after byes. 30-17. Week 13 vs. NO, they finally overcome their biggest weakness. 5 picks, W. Week 15, biggest performance in their biggest moment. 34-0. The Falcons lost games exactly when they didn't need to show up and they showed up exactly when they needed to win games. In those games, the Falcons allowed 58.7% completion, a total of 327.6 yards/game (211.8 passing/115.8 rushing), 3 passing TDs, 14 INTs, and 5 fumbles. They turned the ball over twice themselves for a TO ratio of +17. Nothing matters till the playoffs. The players know that too. They showed what they needed to, and they'll be ready. New Orleans, here we come. Thoughts?
Want to try condensing that to two or three sentences? It's too long for me to read all the way through and keep up with the flood of chat questions.
Will Pioli end up in ATL with Thomas D?
Certainly is logical because of his connection to Dimitroff and Caldwell's departure. But I've heard rumblings Pioli might want to take a year off.
I'm hearing Ricky Proehl is going to be the new WR's coach at Carolina. Are you hearing the same and what are your thoughts?
Haven't heard if they're leaning that way. But I think Ricky would be an excellent pick.
I see that Cladwell dont want Teabow afterall. I think the Flacons shold go after Teabow if the Jacs dont want him
Only if they're going to put him at fullback -- where he belongs.
Any chance we see some more exotic looks from Nolan? I can't help but to think he's been holding some things back for playoff time.
I strongly suspect you might see a wrinkle or two that you didn't see all year.
Hey Pat, any offensive or defensive player big names you can see the Saints going to aquire in the offseason?
Don't think they need to do too much on offense, but defense needs plenty of work. They're not going to have a lot of cap room. But Loomis is pretty good at working the cap, so they might be able to squeeze in a couple of mid-level defensive free agents.
Pat, any word on when Seattle will be flying into Atlanta? I've seen conflicting reports ranging from last night to this evening.
I believe it's this evening (hope no airport employees show up with eggs). But I'll double check with Mike Sando and will include a note on it in my afternoon round-up.
Have not heard much on the LA stadium, if TB struggles selling out next year are they a viable candidate?
I don't think it's to that point yet for Bucs. Could be if attendance lags for a few more years, but not yet. Jags are well ahead of them in the LA line anyway.
Pat have you heard anymore about where the Panthers might be leaning for special teams coordinator?
They interviewed Dave Toub. He has history with Rivera.
Before anyone else panics, the Falcons have a an extra week to prepare, heal and not travel across the country. Don't let the so called experts picking Seattle based on past Falcons failures influence your perception of this game.Rise Up
There are some more reasons for optimism for the earlier chatter.
So Richardson likes Rivera. Obvioulsy since he kept him he does to an extent, but you said Hurney was fired partly b/c JR did not like him. Just a little confused...
When did I say Richardson didn't like Hurney??? I know I never said that because Richardson and Hurney were very, very close. It was a painful decision to fire him.
Do you think Chud needed another season or two before getting a HC job? It doesn't seem like Browns fans and media are too happy about that hire...
I think he would have been received a lot better last year. He was a hot name then because of Cam's rookie year.
NO you said Richardson did not like the Rivera hire. That is partly why JR fired him.
No, I never said that. You're thinking of something that was written by someone else.
Pat, lets talk about Josh Freeman. While his passing percentages were low, I have a theory for it: Obviously everyone knows about the vertical aspect of the bucs offense, but what really caused the percentage issue was no reliable slot receiver. Look at the great QB's, and they usually have a great slot receivers (manning, brady, rogers, matty ice). While it might not be a slot receiver (could be a TE), you need skill players who are zone killers. Thoughts?
That certainly would help.
Pat, a lot of speculation about where Tebow will end up next season. Would it make sense for a team like the Panthers, which ran a read-option offense for Cam, to sign Tebow as a read-option sub in (worst) case of injury to Cam? BTW, thanks for answering my question a few weeks ago.
Just my personal opinion and I've said it before (many times) -- Tebow is not an NFL QB. If he's going to play in NFL, move him to fullback or tight end.
i heard that chud was calling plays more to show off his skills so he could get a HC job rather then the better of the team did u hear anything about that
No, I did not.
With the departure of Chud from Carolina, how much do you think this hurts Riveras chances of making the playoffs next year? I know you say Shula would be a good replacement but i have to admit i am really worried now because that continuity has now been broken.
Yeah, but part of my logic is that Shula would keep continuity because he knows the Chud offense and would just keep running it.
Hey Pat, Vilma, smith, and Ellis gone from the big easy next year to free up Cap space? what do you think?
Think Vilma and Smith probably go. Or at least they get major restructures. Ellis is going to be a free agent and doesn't count against cap, so I think they let him walk.
Hey Pat!! The kicker situation and the loss of Clemons with SEA I believe is being grossly underestimated...you agree? I mean pass rush and field goals...its one of the top playoff needs right! Also, any validity to this 'foot' injury with Lynch? Rise up.
Sure, both of those situations are significant. On Lynch, I don't think it's a big deal. Think they just have been resting him.
Sheridan is not a good D coordinator with a large amount of quality coaches out there right now why dont we make a change, especially with two (Tucker , Jauron) with HC experience to help out
Talk to Schiano. He's the one making the call and it doesn't seem like he's planning to make a move, at least as far as I can tell.
Do you think the panthers got the best person for the job regarding the GM position?
Time will tell. But I think Gettleman was a decent hire. Has a good rep. But part of me wonders if they would have been better off with someone that's been a GM before, like maybe a Jerry Angelo or someone like that.
Hey Pat with Chris Gamble likely cut to save cap space do you think CB is the Panthers' biggest need in the draft?
Probably so. DT would be right up there too.
Pat, I'm a big Freeman fan and I hate the recent talk around the sports world about QB competition. If the Bucs bring in a guy to compete, will it mess with 5's psyche and then the Bucs have fulfilled their own prophecy of Freeman not being the guy?
Look at the flip side -- maybe it prompts Josh to step up. I think that's possible. He's a very talented kid.
How much do you think the Falcons defence suffers if Nolan leaves for a head coaching position? Do you think the talent and bonding ('swagger') keeps this D good?
It would be a blow. But I think the swagger as come as much from Asante Samuel and Sean Weatherspoon as it has from Nolan.
Any chance the Panthers add a Free Safety as well, considering Nakamura was not very good too say the least
Yes, I think safety is definitely a need area for them.
Maybe it's my perception, but there seems to be more love for Russell Wilson than Matt Ryan(excluding your reports).I think those people are underestimating Ryan and his competitive nature. He gets a scary look in his eyes some times......Agree?
Agree. There is a fiery side to Matt. When he's on camera or talking to large groups, he comes across as perhaps too nice and polite. But I know the guy and there's more to him than what he lets on.
Pat I am the only one who is not happy that Rivera was not fired?. i mean sure the Panthers have won 4 games in a row but they did not win when it matter early in the season.
You're not alone. It seems like Panthers fans are split on that one.
has it ever happened before where a team can be 1st in rush def, and last in pass def? How does that happen? Buccs had most plays for a loss, why couldn't they get to the QB?
Great question. I will get ESPN Stats & Info friends to check on that.
Do you think we will bring someone in to compete with Nortman for the punting duties? I haven't seen too many punters shank as many as he did this season.
Maybe, but maybe they take a lesson from how Falcons were patient with Bosher last year and it paid off in Year 2.
Is Luke Stocker the Future at TE? for TB
Part of the future. But I think they'll bring in someone else as well.
Any good reciever that Brees can aquire in the offseason?
Robert Meachem could be back on the market after disappointing year in San Diego.
Pat, don't you think another need is WR? I mean Smitty has some good years left but I think it's time we start grooming someone to become the #1 when he does retire,
Yep, Panthers need to get Smith's eventual replacement sooner rather than later.
If the Panthers cut Gamble and only Gamble, do you think it will be possible for them to get under the cap by restructuring contracts and without cutting anyone else and if not who else do you think is a likely cut? Thanks
No, they'll need to cut others. Ron Edwards is a certainty. Beason is a good possibility. Gross is possible, but a long shot because I don't know where they get another LT right now. Plus, Gross's contract is one of the few that wouldn't be hard to restructure.
It seems every year, the Saints have one of the worst defenses in the NFL. Is it a scheme problem or just drafting bad players?
Excellent question and I can't do full justice to it in a chat answer. Short answer is it's a combination. Their drafting of defensive players hasn't been great. Ellis, Jenkins, Robinson all were first round picks that haven't lived up to their billing.
How hard would it be too restructure the contracts of Charles Johnson, Jon Beason and Deangelo Williams? considering the front loaded nature of these deals
Johnson would be easy. Beason and DeAngelo wouldn't be as easy as you might think, especially DeAngelo. Think they might designate him as a June 1 release.
Why did the Saints even draft Mark Ingram in the first place? At Alabama he thrived when given carry after carry to wear down the defense. Saints never give him the chance to do that.
You're preaching to the choir on that one. If you're going to trade up to get a guy, you should make him THE GUY. And I'm not sure a pass-happy team like the Saints should ever use a first-round pick on a RB.
you really think ATL's D is disciplined enough to defend Seattle's read option? That defense struggled vs Cam, why do you think they will fare better vs a better QB in Wilson?
I'd be more concerned about Lynch in the regular running game than Wilson in the read option. Think Falcons will have their hands full with Lynch.
When the Falcons win Sunday, do you think it will finally change the national conversation about our franchise?
If they win, yeah, I think the perception of them will change instantly and dramatically.
How often do you think we will see Ryan in no-huddle? Better question, how often should we see no-huddle? Why is Mike Smith so reluctant to let Ryan run the no-huddle?
If it were me, I'd run no-huddle just about all the time. It always seems to work when they run it.
A lot of people are making a big deal about Freeman and his future in Tampa and trying to blame him for the Bucs lack of success. But have the Bucs since Freeman's been their QB ever not been ranked near the bottom of the league in defense?
The easy thing to do on any level of football is to blame the QB for everything. Freeman certainly needs to improve but he definitely wasn't the whole problem.
Pat Will the Screen game be the key for a Falcons Win??
Could be. But saw a stat where Seattle defense is very good against the screen. Think they ranked second in league and only allowed 3.0 yards (or something like that) per attempt on screens.
When will you do a blog breaking down the Falcons cap ?
When their season is over. They're not in bad shape. Won't have tons of room like Bucs. But won't have to cut people just to get under the cap. They're already under it. Think they're at $112 million or so.
Could Mike Smith's job be in jeopardy should the Falcons lose this weekend?
I don't think so. But, like I said earlier, I think a loss would put him on a very hot seat right from the start of 2013 season.
Pat you said Atl should pass the ball against the Seahawks, I disagree with you they will need to establish a run game with Seattle to be balanced. IMO
You really want to see Michael Turner up the middle? They do that and three and out first two series and could be down 14-0 before they know it.
Who will replace Caldwell for the Falcons? Any word? What effects will his departure have?
Pioli may be a possibility. But there are some internal candidates there. Dimitroff has a deep and talented personnel staff (both college and pro).
I disagree that Smith could/should lose his job if he does not win it all because he failed this year. I think Blank has learned his lesson that making bold coaching moves(Petrino) is not the best for the franchise. I suspect Blank will realize it may take time and plenty of good fortune.....It took Cowher a long time to win a Superbowl.
I didn't say Smith would lose his job if they lose. In fact, I said just the opposite. I said he would stay, but would enter 2013 under enormous pressure. Blank is more patient than he once was, but 0-4 would start to really test his patience.
What are the chances the Panthers are as good or better next year than they were down the stretch this year considering all of the cuts and cap casualties they will have this offseason?
Still lots of talent on that roster. If some guys that didn't step up last season step up in 2013, they could turn it around.
As a die-hard Saints fan I read a lot of posts. I'm seeing a lot of people for Spaggs to be fired. I totally disagree. Name one defender we have oh defense that keep OC's up at nite. We have no one. I also see people saying we need secondary help. I disagree with that also. You could put Revis and Champ in our secondary and it wouldn't matter. No pass rush kills a secondary. I say give him a draft or two before cutting him loose. Let's see what happens when he has talent too work with.
I'm with you on all of that. Pass rush should be their first priority.
Why dont the falcons give jaquiz a chance to start sunday....I have watched every game this season and turner is slow and hits the wrong holes and goes backwards alot where as rogers atleast falls fowards
If it was me Jacquizz would have been starting long ago. But it's Smith's call and he's going to be loyal to his veteran.
Why do you refer to players like Freeman as *kids*? They aren't kids. Seems like a built-in excuse when they struggle... like it's not really their fault.
Because they are "kids" to me. Last player I covered that was older than me was either Rodney Peete or Steve Beuerlein!!!
I like Rivera and am worried now that he could be a victim of circumstance with losing his OC as well as several good players. Any chance Mr Richardson takes that into account next year if the Panthers have a good year but still dont make the PLayoffs? Thanks for answering my questions and i promise that was the last one LOL
Let's just say it would be in Rivera's best interest to make the playoffs.
I don't believe you can waste the whole Drew Brees contract on trying to fix this defense to make it conform to what Spags wants to do. We need a DC that's gonna scheme around the talent he has like Gregg Williams did, what's your thoughts about that Pat ?
You want Gregg Williams back?????
ATL tried to come out throwing vs Carolina, and look what happened. Seattle had a much better defense than Carolina too, and a better ball control offense.
Just my personal opinion, but I think they should play to their strength, which is their passing game. Turner was great for several years, but he clearly is past his prime.
Pat with all these coaches leaving tampa shouldnt they speed up finding replacements before the best are gone ?
I'm sure they're working on it.
With Dee Milliner declaring for the draft & probably being a top 10 pick do you see the Bucs moving up so they can pair him with Barron in the secondary?
Appreciate the question and the persistence. But we'll talk draft when it gets closer.
Bounties aside, Saints never missed the playoffs with Gregg and was under .500 once and won a Superbowl on his watch, hell yeah I'll take Williams back. Spags is the return of Gary Gibbs !!!
Well, I don't think Gregg's available.
Matt Ryan and his receivers faced the same Seattle secondary last year and ended up with close to 300 yards, 1TD and no INTs. Can Falcons fans take that as an encouraging fact?
Let's run that by them and see. All right, time is almost up. Couple more questions.
Is Johnathan Massiqia (I Know I jacked it up) the heir apprant to John Abraham?
Doubt it. He didn't show enough to get on the field much this year and it's not like Falcons were loaded with Depth at DE.
I'm with PY, if I see a toss to Turner like we saw in the Detroit game I will be screaming. They tossed to Turner 3 times, all for losses.
Do you believe that giving up points as a defense is a skill? I ask because Atlanta's defense gave up a lot of yards...but not a lot of points.
Something to be said for that. Smith likes to talk about the yardage as "empty calories". He has a point.
What's your favorite thing about the Georgia Dome?
Way the crowd gets fired up when they do the Rise Up video. All right, that's it for this week's chat. Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend.
Pat will you be doing the chat next week if the Falcons will lose on Sunday thanks and have a good weekend.
We'll see. But one last thing I should mention here -- we'll be doing a Countdown Live chat throughout the game Sunday. Please join us. All right, I'm out.