One Day At A Time For Muschamp

Injuries and position moves have Auburn defensive coordinator Will Muschamp taking things one day at a time.

Auburn, Ala.--Following a day off on Monday to watch the film of the first day in full pads, the Auburn Tigers returned to the practice fields on Tuesday morning for the first two-a-day practice of fall camp. Practicing for just over two hours in full pads it was obviously one of the best days so far for Coach Will Muschamp's defense as they had a very solid morning. He said while the day was a good one there is no rest for the weary.

"We had some good effort and obviously we had some mistakes which we're going to have early in camp," Muschamp said. "We've thrown a lot them. We're going to continue to install because we're hopefully going to play a 14-game season. We need to have enough ammunition in our gun to be ready to go. We want to introduce as much as we can introduce to them in fall camp as well as getting better fundamentally and physically. That's what we're trying to do right now."

There were several changes on the defensive side of the ball with the most notable being Christopher Browder's move back to defensive end from his tackle position. A tackle since moving over in the spring, the emergence of Pat Sims and Sen'Derrick Marks has, at the moment, allowed Browder to move back to his more natural defensive end position. Muschamp said that while Sims has come on strong he still has to prove he can be consistent on a daily basis.

"Let's go day to day," Muschamp said. "Pat is a day to day guy. We've just got to take one step at a time and we're going to baby step everything."

Browder and offensive tackle King Dunlap had some good battles Tuesday morning.

An injury has also forced some changes at linebacker as Steve Gandy's leg injury is more serious that it seemed like when it happened on Sunday. At the time both Gandy and Tommy Tuberville said the injury was a bruised quad muscle but team officials said the injury was a ‘one in a million and freakish' kind of injury. It will keep him sidelined for several weeks. Muschamp said because of that they're looking at some different things at the position.

"We're going to coach who's here," Muschamp said. "It's very unfortunate. Steve was having an outstanding camp and an outstanding person. He will be back for us this season. We know that and the type of person he is we need him back because of the intangibles he brings to our team. It's very unfortunate and I hurt for that kid.

"Right now Karibi (Karibi Dede) would be at the Will, Merrill Johnson would be at the Mike and Will (Will Herring) would be at the Sam. We feel very comfortable with those guys. We need Courtney Harden, Chris Evans, Craig Stevens to stand up along with Alonzo Horton and Patrick Trahan. Those kids need to step up and make some plays for us. It's their turn and they need to do it."

Tristan Davis lays the hammer down on wide receiver Montez Billings but he held on to the ball.

Perhaps the most competition on the defensive side of the ball is coming at the safety position as Eric Brock is holding strong at one spot while Tristan Davis and Aairon Savage are locked in a battle for the other starting job. Muschamp said that the defense as a whole need to keep playing consistent football throughout the rest of training camp.

"I think Eric has been the more consistent guy at this point but it's day-to-day," Muschamp said. "I approach these guys like the business world, you need to be productive in what you're doing every day. We need to come out and have another good practice this afternoon. I talked to the guys about relief syndrome. We did some good things this morning and the worst thing we can do is to kick back and think that we did a good job. We need to come back and be hungry this afternoon for the p.m. practice."

Offensively the line again had some shuffling as Jonathan Palmer worked exclusively at center with the first team while Antwoin Daniels was at right tackle ahead of Leon Hart. During 11-on-11 work the quarterbacks made some good plays despite getting pressure all day long from the defensive ends. Quentin Groves made life pretty miserable for Daniels as he got consistent pressure on Brandon Cox.

Practice Notes:

Defensive end Marquies Gunn is expected back to practice later in the week after suffering a strained hamstring during Sunday's practice.

Tight end Gabe McKenzie had several nice plays in the passing game and continues to improve as a receiver.

Offensive tackle King Dunlap looks like he's ready to become one of the elite offensive linemen in the SEC. Bigger and stronger, he's capable of burying defenders with his massive size.

The Tigers will return to the practice field at 4:30 this afternoon for the second practice of the day.

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