-In running game drills they worked a lot of stretch or outside runs
-2nd look at Josh Robinsonand his conditioning looks improved from the fall
-Jameon continuing to look focused; going very hard in drills
-Malcolm runs drills w/WR (it seems they really want to exploit his pass catching ability)
-biggest thing Derrick Milton/Josh Robinson need to improve is pass blocking
-Matt Wells,Richie Brown ,Bednardrick Mckinney, Deonte Skinner, and ChrisHughes looked fast in pass blocking/rushing drills. They’re hard to block.
-Ladarius Perkins is our best pass blocking RB and isn’t close
-Matt Wells dominated everyone he faced in pass rushing drills. He’s just too fast
-walk-on QB Josh Hand (j)r has a decent arm and is our 3rd QB this spring
-Chappelle looks better in the 1 on 1 drills than in team or 7 on 7’s
-Nickoe looks 10x better moving. Laterally, cutting, etc…
-DB’s winning more of the 1on 1 vs. Wr’s
-Rojo Rojo Rojo
-great adjustment and back shoulder catch by Fred Brown
-Will Redmond and JamesonLlove got a few reps at ko return
-nice int by Jay Hughes in 7 on 7 passing drills. Another 1 on a tip a few plays later
-Rojo beats Cox on a fade/streak
-Fred Brown gets a long TD
-Michael Carr catching everything thrown at him
-Nice diving pbu by Richie Brown
– Dee Arrington has great size for SS. Looks like an all-SEC guy (eye test)
-PJ Jones blows up a running play
-Tyler Russel making audibles and coverage checks without coaching instructions.
-2 straight catches for Morrow
-Deontae Evans with a nice blitz and TFL
-nice 10 yard run by Derrick Milton
-Nick James killing 2nd team OL
-don’t think anyone has more fun playing football than Nick James
-Jameon Lewis getting plenty of targets and receptions in scrimmage (5 straight receptions on passing downs). Looks to be Russell’s go to right now.
-15 yard run by Milton then 10 next play
-Brandon Hill layed out for a nice reception
-can’t comment enough on how much better Nickoe’s conditioning looks.
-long run for Ladarius Perkins
-Morrow w/a 20 yard grab on sideline
While in attendance of my 2nd practice of the spring I again jotted down notes as practice went along. If you notice more notes on skill players than lineman it’s because of where they practice on the field in relation to where fans have to watch.
So far I’d have to say my biggest surprise of the spring is Fred Brown. I honestly wasn’t expecting much but he constantly catches your eye in drills and scrimmage. You can really see him progressing as a WR after coming from a run only offense in high school. I feel good about his future at WR; he will be good for us.
The 2 guys that really seem to be asserting themselves as playmakers on offense are Jameon Lewis and Robert Johnson (Rojo). Jameon is going all out of every drill, has great hands, and gets more targets than any other WR. He is really slick when he gets the ball in his hands. I’m really excited about him this fall. Robert is the big, strong presence we have been missing at WR. He’s got really good speed as well and is never brought down by the first DB to tackle him. He’s just too strong for that.
On the defensive line it’s easy to notice that PJ Jones has really stepped up. He looks really good physically and is playing like what we expected from him. He’s the leader of the DT group. Nick James looks as if he has really turned it on. He’s my favorite guy to watch because he looks to have the most fun out there. He is definitely the personality of our defense and he looks ready to make a bigger splash this year. Preston Smith has really impressed me at DE. He is gotten bigger and looks really good out there. Since the QB’s are off limits it’s hard to judge his sacks but it looks like our T’s really struggle with him. I think he’ll lead us in sacks again.
At DB the number 1 thing that has been evident is how different Nickoe looks. His injury obviously greatly affected his conditioning last year and he looked to be a step slower last year. He is much slimmer this spring and appears to be moving like he used to. It was easiest to notice in the 1 on 1 cover drills how much better he appears to feel. Will Redmond continues to impress and get plenty of opportunities with the 1’s. The battle at SS is pretty cool to watch. Just from eye test and the drills you want to hand it to Dee Arrington. He’s impressive looking physically and athletically. Then in scrimmages and 7 on 7’s, Jay Hughes is always in the right spot (had 2 int’s close together today). I’m not sure who will ultimately win that battle but I’m comfortable with either.
The last thing that really jumped out at me was during our pass blocking/pass rushing drills how good our LB’s were. They were matched up with RB’s and TE’s and our LB’s were simply unblockable. Mckinney is so long, he is physically suited to be a good blitzer. The number 1 guy that stuck out was easily Matt Wells. He is lightening and no one came close to putting a body on him. With Collins saying he’s bringing the mayhem, I really expect Matt Wells to be utilized much more to his ability. If he gets turned loose blitzing this fall, I really think he will make the biggest improvement from last year. The correct utilization of Matt Wells and his elite athletic ability will pay dividends.