By JetCaneÂ Â
Alrighty, lots to talk about today, so let’s get it started.Â This was a full pads workout, that started with some walk throughs, then the stretching, and an abbreviated amount of combine drills.
Leon did not practice today, and Justin Miller stayed by the bike section in jersey with no pads. Kowalewski rode the bike. Chatham and Dwight were in street clothes (shorts and t-shirt), walking the sideline.
Eric Smith returned to practice with his lower leg bandaged. He seemed to be favoring the leg slightly, and took most of his reps with the second team. Towards the end of the practice, when the contact eased up some, he took reps with the first team.
Then Coach Westhoff called for some kickoff reps, and he told everyone he wanted them to BRING IT.Â There was the popping sound of pads hitting pads today more so than there has been all camp, starting with these KO reps.
The morning dew wasnâ€™t even off the grass before Westhoff reamed Harris a new butt hole- “we’ll be out here all day if that’s the way you’re going to do it!” Westhoff was yelling at everyone to bring it, and his voice was a wakeup call for the fans as well as the players, and most definitely for Harris, who may need to have a fire lit under him to get him to start playing with a little more fire.
Most of Nugent’s KOs went to between the 5 and the goal line.Â With Miller out and Leon not in attendance, Brad Smith and Stuckey took most of the KOs.Â Westhoff was really working the blockers on the KO team, and there was some good old fashioned hitting going on out there. It set the tone for the next hour, which featured a lot of pads popping on pads. The contact eased up for the last hour of practice.
After the KOs, they put the OL against the DL on running plays, and there was plenty of loud contact going on. The coaches were all very verbal, egging the guys on to play hard. This was a very competitive drill with a lot of supportive yelling and cheering by the assistant coaches. Then they moved into the 11 on 11s.
On the first play of 11s, Clark had a false start and took a lap. He didnâ€™t see any more reps with the first team until the last set of 11s at the end of the practice. Kendall took the first team snaps after Clark’s penalty.
The offense worked on fine tuning some of the basic plays it has been working on, and there was a noticeable emphasis on shifting into different formations and putting guys in motion. Unlike last year when new stuff had the defense off-balance, they handled this with aplomb, and had a better handle on what the offense was doing.
Chad Pennington wasnâ€™t particularly sharp during the first set of 11s, nor was Clemens.
Clemens continues to audible at the LOS, but was doing it quicker and not losing the rhythm that occurs when you stand over the center for too long. His footwork also seems a little better than it did when camp first opened.Â Overall, he looks more comfortable doing what he is doing than he was last year.Â All four QBs had a turn at the 11s, so it seems everyone on the team got involved in it today. Hobson had a nice pick of a Clemens pass near the sideline.
After the 11s, they broke off into groups again to work on individual unit stuff.Â That was good time for me to leave my seat on the broiling aluminum bleachers, and walk over into the shade to watch the big uglies. I noticed that Tony Wise was spending a lot of time coaching up 3rd string center Joe Villani (69) today, and he had a lot of good praise for Jake Bender (72).
Then they went back into a final set of 11s, and Mangini had the first team offense start on it own 5 yard line, down 26-20 late in the 4th quarter.Â Pennington led the offense 95 yards downfield, culminating with a 15-20 yard TD to Coles in the back corner of the EZ on a pass that looked like it was being thrown away.Â But Coles made a great catch in coverage for the TD!
Coles had a great day at practice, hauling in at least 4 or 5 catches, and one or two of them were spectacular.
There is no one on the team who can cover Jericho Cotchery that I have seen.
Wallace Wright had a couple of nice catches. He continues to get open.
With Miller out, and Dyson still not 100%, Barrett, Coleman, Kizer and Poteat got a lot of reps at CB. Dyson did start with the first team, but the other guys saw a lot of action.
Manny Collins saw some action, too, and Chad was picking on him so the coaches could get a look at him. He didnâ€™t do anything outstanding that I saw, but he was in the middle of some action.
Drew Coleman is having a nice camp so far.
Hobson is quietly having a VERY good camp so far, in my opinion.
TJ continues to get a LOT of reps on running plays and catching passes. On one play where he caught a delay out of the backfield, Kendall did a nice job wiping out Barton while blocking out front for TJ.
Alvin Banks was the RB with the second team today, and he continues to look good.
Lots of work on the short passing game, but CP had a beautiful long completion down the far sideline to Cotch, who had beaten Dyson by 5 yards.
Costanzo had an impressive practice today and was very physical during the hitting portion of practice.
Spencer played with a chip on his shoulder, which is a good thing.
Barnes is also very physical, and was laying the wood on guys during the heavy contact today.
Bender had a good day and saw reps with the second team, playing next to Wicker.
The team practices smart, and guys arenâ€™t looking to hurt each other out there. Vilma would just “tag” TJ, and JV was around the action today on running plays.
Ellis made a nice play, fighting off a block and stopping TJ at the LOS.
Kenyon is seeing plenty of action with the first team DL.
They showed some 4-3 with Thomas in a stance, but for the most part i thought they were in a nickel today.
There were some milfs in attendance today. Pics coming later…
And Juan Wong was there!
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