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Fleur-de-Links: Wednesday, February 28

The combine week is here, and it appears Sean Payton’s enjoying himself.

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton attends a SiriusXM interview session at Super Bowl LII Radio Row at the Mall of America.
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton attends a SiriusXM interview session at Super Bowl LII Radio Row at the Mall of America.
Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM

The National Football League is descending on Indianapolis for the 2018 Scouting Combine with hundreds of draft prospects and their agents meeting with representatives from all 32 teams. Wheelings and dealings are afoot.


Around the NFC South

NFL |Former Panthers, Bears star forgoes easy life, joins FBI | Charlotte Observer
Former Carolina Panthers and Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman is giving up a life of ease as a retired NFL millionaire to fight crime as an FBI agent.

Senio Kelemete loves Saints, but may need to leave for a starting job – ProFootballTalk
Senio Kelemete has started 17 games at guard for the Saints over the last two seasons, which has led to him playing more than 57 percent of the team's offensive snaps.

Breaking: Dan Quinn shockingly wants Falcons to stop dropping passes - The Falcoholic
Big news.

The hope for Marty Hurney - Cat Scratch Reader
Rehiring their old general manager might have been a good idea for the Carolina Panthers.

Carolina Panthers GM Marty Hurney’s offensive NFL Combine tendencies - Cat Scratch Reader
As general manager of the Panthers from 2002-2012, Hurney drafted 81 players. With the combine approaching next week, I wanted to analyze some of the positional tendencies Hurney implemented during his first stint in Carolina.

NFL 2018 Offseason Preview, NFC South: Saints, Falcons look to reload; Panthers, Bucs need help
Three NFL playoff teams came out of the NFC South in 2017. The Saints and Falcons are in great shape, while the Panthers need help.

New Bucs assistant Brentson Buckner knows challenge of NFC South QBs
New Bucs defensive line coach Brentson Buckner understands full well what a challenge he'll face in trying to bring down three talented quarterbacks in the NFC South this season.

Will New Orleans Saints revisit Malcolm Butler or Trumaine Johnson? - NFC South- ESPN
The Saints are likely to target more depth at cornerback, but Marshon Lattimore emerging as a stud figures to impact how high they will aim.

Where Panthers sale stands: Who's interested and what's next - NFC South- ESPN
Steelers minority owner David Tepper is interested in a Panthers franchise estimated to be worth $2.3 billion, but he isn't the only one.


NFL Draft: The Specialization of Defensive Backs |
As NFL passing games become more diverse, defenses are figuring out that they need a variety of DBs to fill different roles. It means more will be selected in April. But it also means teams might prefer to shop in the middle rounds rather than the top of the draft

Combine Question Corner - Evaluations -
We break down which players have the most to gain and lose depending on how they perform at the NFL Scouting Combine this week.

Detente between Roger Goodell, Jerry Jones didn't last long
Jones’ desire to be a cornerstone in future weighty decisions and Goodell being a lightning rod have suggested an uneven landscape over the next two years.

10 impending NFL free agents who will be underrated difference-makers
Names like Le'Veon Bell, Kirk Cousins, Case Keenum will draw the most attention in NFL free agency. But several other underrated names can make a big impact.

WWE reportedly trying to lure Rob Gronkowski away from football
There's a rumor that WWE is trying to tempt Gronk into an early NFL retirement, en route to a part-time role with WWE.Is it believable?

Bill Polian, do everyone a wonderful favor and please stop talking
Since becoming an NFL analyst for ESPN in 2012, Bill Polian has proven time and time again that his opinions are embarrassingly out of touch.

Why have the Baltimore Ravens always struggled for prolific pass-catchers?
The Baltimore Ravens have never really had a top-flight receiver. Why is that, and could this be the offseason the team finally addresses a 20-year need?