NFC South Blog
Falcons' veteran receiver wideout Roddy White has not been shy about lobbying for Julio Jones to get a contract extension and a very lucrative one. White was at it again, he is now campaigning for Jones more than ever now that Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas have set the bar. "If I was the GM, I would get a deal done with Julio now," White said. "I want to make sure he's paid. That's my guy … The more they wait, the more it's going to cost them. It's important that (Julio) feels comfortable."
Former Bengals tight end Jermaine Gresham "is now the NFL's most sought-after available tight end" according to ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter. He is yet to sign with a team after undergoing back surgery this offseason. There is already a contract on the table from the Saints and he's set to meet with the Cardinals this week. Gresham has a few other meetings planned over the next two weeks and is expected to sign a deal before camp opens up.
SCOUT Fantasy's official Breakout Player of the Year Brandin Cooks is fully expected to be the Saints' top target this season. With Jimmy Graham and Kenny Stills shipped out of town, Cooks is far-and-away Drew Brees' best option. Marques Colston is aging and the rest of the WR corps is completely unproven. Josh Hill and C.J. Spiller are questionable at best and complete busts at worst. Cooks is expected to lead the Saints in targets as well as pretty much very other receiving category, perhaps with the exception of touchdowns.
The Falcons reportedly "really like" wide receiver Leonard Hankerson and he could even push for Roddy White's WR2 job this season. The former Miami Hurricane has a ton of talent but just as he was beginning to blossom in 2013, he went down with a devastating knee injury. He is finally fully healthy and turning heads in Atlanta. His 6-foot-2 frame makes him a viable outside option. Atlanta plans to get him involved in the offense this season.
Panthers' second-year wideout Kelvin Benjamin was hindered by hamstring injuries through most of OTAs. He is the Panthers' top wideout so they certainly need him out on the field. His head coach Ron Rivera says that he expects Benjamin "to be full go at training camp" and will no longer be limited by his hamstrings. It's safe to say that KB is back to 100 percent or the Panthers would not risk putting him out on the field. He will look to build off a 1,000 yard campaign.
Free agent quarterback Michael Vick has been clear that he intends to continue his career. He also admitted that he knows it may take an injury for him to get a deal. On Thursday he sent out a tweet attached to a short video of him rolling out and throwing an accurate pass to a receiver. The tweet read, "Stay fresh stay focused stay #READY... #v7"
Kelvin Benjamin raised some eyebrows when he showed up to OTAs overweight. His conditioning was further questioned once he strained his hamstring and was forced to miss the remainder of the offseason workouts. Now KB says his weight is "perfect" and he's expected to be a full go when training camp opens. Benjamin says he's back down to his playing weight, which is about 245 pounds. "I'm not on the scale," Benjamin said. "But I'm playing weight."