It was a little overcast this morning, so I figured with only one practice today that we’d be treated to a good one. I was wrong. Today was definitely the dullest practice this week and we were sloppy to boot. There were even referees there today, so we hought we were going to be treated to a scrimmage.
When I arrived at 8:45 there were already a lot of guys on the field doing some special teams practice. Chad Morton was very vocal and definitely seemed to have already gained loads of confidence. The guy is very likeable. He was the first one on the field (I was told) and he was the last one off the field. He and Matt Bowen have the kind of work ethic out there that you love to see.
After 10-15 minutes of stretcing the team split into offensive and defensive units. I stuck with the o-line again today, but once again, there was little to gauge anything on. The offense just lined up in formation and practiced some different sets. The only observation of note that I have for you is that Chris Samuels and Jon Jansen were instructing all the other players when they weren’t in their three-point stances. I love to see that kind of leadership and awareness.
11 on 11s
About half an hour into practice, the offense and defense got back together for some 11 on 11. On the very first play, Lavar proved that obviously yesterday’s injury was nothing serious… he blasted at Zeron Flemister and drove him all the way back to Ramsey. Ramsey just stood in there and fired a bomb down the right sideline into the waiting arms of Laveranues Coles.
On the next play, only a great read by Bowen prevented Ramsey from making another good completion. Matt also ran down Kenny Watson from behind again today. You’re going to love this guy… when’s the last time we had a good safety? He’s fast, he’s cerebral, and more importanly, he’s got that eye of the tiger that you love to see in the secondary. When Bowen was at Iowa, he wrote in the Daily Iowan that, ‘Every time you lose, a piece of you dies. And you can never get it back.’ Impressively… he practices the exact same way.
The offense and Ramsey actually didn’t have a great day. There were some sloppy plays and the unit just wasn’t that sharp. It could also have had something to do with the play of the defense. Andre Lott had his best practice of camp. He stripped the ball from a receiver on one play and pulled in a tip for an interception on another. I guess Ifyani Ohalete must have felt some pressure because he stepped up and really smacked Robert Royal for the best hit of the day.
Other notables from the 11 on 11’s…
Patrick Johnson got quite a few reps today and made some good catches. There were a lot of guys sitting out today, so perhaps it had something to do with that. Word was, that anyone rehabbing an injury was given the day off, so Cliff Russell’s reps may have gone to Johnson.
Rob Johnson didn’t throw the ball at all today. He did run in the sprints though, so I’ll try to figure out why he wasn’t throwing by tomorrow. Johnson’s absence meant more reps for both Gibran Hamdan and Brad Banks, but neither of them took advantage of it. like i said the offense just looked out of synch today.
Derrick Dockery had a little shoving match with someone today, but i couldn’t really see who it was.
Sean Dillard has great hands and good speed. He won’t crack this receiving corps, but I watched him field punts and kickoffs brilliantly, so he may catch on with somebody.
Taylor Jacobs was good again today. He runs great routes, you can really appreciate the crispness of a Fun ‘N Gun route when you watch him. Russell has been very impressive, but Jacobs familiarity with the system will definitely lead him to some substantial playing time in his rookie season. He was also initiated today.
At the end of practice, Brian (redskinfan) noticed that Jon Jansen had taken Jacobs out of the post practice stretch down. They were walking down the field, Jansen’s arm around Taylor’s shoulder. At this point, I looked at Brian and I said that that could mean only one thing… a hazing. So we ran down to the end they were heading too and we started yellling “Tape him up Jon.” Everybody around us thought that we were nuts, but sure enough, they got to the goalposts and Jon taped him there. Then they poured gatorade and water all over him. It was great… we were definitely the first ones to figure out what was going on. Unfortunately, he was only there for a couple of minutes… not like Fred Smoot or Patrick Ramsey’s more lengthy stay. Ramsey was actually the one who cut him down.
Derrick Dockery also carried Randy Thomas’ equipment to the dressing room for him.
That’s about it, like I sad, it was a fairly dull practice.
I want to set up a meeting place for tomorrow since a few of you have been looking for me and not found me. I am going to stand at the picnic benches in front of the tents tomorrow AM between 9:00 and 9:10 while the team is stretching. Look for the visor and join us for a practice!
Edit: This blog was archived in May of 2016 from our original articles database. It was originally posted by Mark Solway