COCKYTALK SPRING PRACTICE REPORT 3/7/13 (Practice #2)
Spring Practice #2 (3/7/13)
I got to the field today to see a little bit of the punting practice before the team lined up for game drills. Not a lot to talk about as far as punting goes. Tyler Hull was the “most” consistent of the group but there was a major drop off of skill after him. Even Tyler was having some issues with inconsistency. He seems to have some good hang time, but even kicking with the wind as his back, there wasn’t a lot to say for his distance. Would liked to have seen some of the field goal work to get some indication of who seems to lead that group, but that’ll have to wait for another practice.
I was able to watch the 1-on-1s while the other groups where doing position drills and of that practice there were a few players (to me) that stood out as leaders for this practice. Jadeveon Clowney, Chaz Sutton, Darius English and Phillip Dukes did some nice work on all of the agility drills. Footwork, Speed and explosiveness off the snap pretty much all day. Last year there was some chatter among the fans who attended practices that Clowney seemed to take some plays “off” and called him somewhat lazy. If there was ever a question of JDs decision to play this year, I think he answered it today. I’m convinced that the coaches have had a long discussion with Jadeveon as to what they are expecting out of him as a leader on the field, and he was giving a leader’s effort out there today. I was also very, VERY impressed with Jordan Diggs and his play through the entire practice. Jordan was very energetic, and very quick and was talking it up a lot after making several good defensive plays. Jordon to me looks like a candidate for a Spur position player with some attitude which is what this team needs with the departure of DJ Swearinger. Not saying he will be “That Guy” but he was playing with that kind of attitude today.
I liked what I saw from both Brendon Nosovitch and Connor Mitch. Both guys threw some nice balls and seemed to have good solid footwork. IMO, Connor is going to have a rough time if he is on the playing roster this season. Not because there is a lack of ability, but he has some very thin legs. Definitely a good looking QB in the making, but there is a need for some work in the weight room to get him game ready. Dylan had a good day in spite of throwing a pick to Jimmy Legree in the one on ones. Overall he had a good day hitting several deep balls throughout the practice. Of the three contenders for roster spots right now (minus Connor Shaw), Brendon Nosovitch was the guy who lacked some with the deeper passes but the timing on the shorter routes and to the sidelines was very good. Mitch was able to spread it around as well as throwing a very catchable deep pass. All of the QBs had some issues with the receivers dropping passes, but I’m also convinced that the breezy conditions may have played a part in that today. It’ll be something to watch progress this spring as the weather clears up.
Mike Davis and Brandon Wilds looked good running and catching the ball. The bulk that Brandon has added has not slowed him down by any means. I really want to see how these players look when the pads go on because the speed and size is there for both of them. Mike seems to have a little more “hop” this spring as well. Watching him carry the ball tonight was fun seeing the defenders get into position and Mike hitting the brakes in front of them and then shooting past them before they touched him. I was also impressed with Kendrick Salley’s effort today. Very good hands catching the ball out of the backfield, and (to me), might be have the best hands of the running backs. He also did a pretty solid job toting the ball when he given the chance, but like the rest of the unit, it’s all like Flag Football at this point until the pads go on.
Of the Wideouts, no one really stood out of the group that I could see as far as performance during practice. There were a lot of dropped balls but there was also a lot of having to adjust their routes while the ball was in the air mainly because of the wind. All I can really tell you here is that most all of the receivers as well as the RBs dropped some passes, and there was really no single player who stole the show. Just drawing on the number of balls caught, I think that Buster Anderson was the guy who caught the most, and most of those was during 1-on-1s.
I’m hesitant to give an opinion on the O/line work tonight as well as the D/Line during 11-on-11. There’s just not a conclusion that you can come to when there’s light contact in the trenches without the pads. The Defensive line looked quicker when the units went head to head, but that’s the case with pretty much all the early practices, and with every team. Even so, I think our defensive front is going to surprise a lot of fans who were concerned with the large number that left the program after last year. Both the Dixons along with Phillip Dukes, Chaz Sutton and Darius English are going to combine well with the likes of Clowney, Surratt and Quarles to keep our defense among the best in the SEC. Kelvin Rainey looked sharp as a linebacker along with above mentioned Jordan Dukes. Rainey was very active in the Skels and 11-on-11, and made a very nice interception to end practice tonight, of a high hard pass from one of the QBs. I didn’t catch the number of the guy who threw it, but Rainey made a very nice spear of it from short range. Moving him from Tight End to Linebacker may turn out to be a brilliant move by the coach who suggested it ! Coach Ward and Coach Botkin seems to have put together a good package (at least for the spring) to replace the large group of our defensive front that graduated or left for the draft. Hopefully the good effort from those units will continue throughout the Spring.
Of the DBs, out there today, there were some solid efforts turned in. Jimmy Legree was in on a lot of deflections and as mention early, he read the curl pattern nicely that Kwinton Smith ran and stepped in front of it for a clean pick of the pass by Thompson during one on ones. I also thought both Chris Moody and Brison Williams had stand out performances in the secondary. None of the other guys had picks but there were several deflections and some good strong coverage from those guys through Skels and 11-on-11. Some of the guys I was interested in seeing today didn’t really “Stand out” as much but I’m hoping to see guys like TJ Gurley, Chaz Elder, and Ronnie Martin come around in the next few practices and get into the mix before the Spring Game.
Next practice is over a week and / half away but it was nice to get the “fix” today. I was having a tough time dealing with not getting out there Tuesday.
Last edited by Spurticus; 03-07-2013 at 09:29 PM.