Part II, Auburn Monday Football Notes

Auburn, Ala.--More news and notes on Auburn's preseason football practices are featured.

*Quarterback Chris Todd threw a pass with a lot of velocity at Monday's first practice, fitting the ball into a narrow opening to wide receiver Quindarius Carr. Todd noted after practice that his shoulder, which frustrated him in spring practice and caused him to miss practice time, is feeling much better.

*On the subject of Todd, the junior says that he is pleased with how the offense is coming along and notes the wide receivers are stepping up and playing well. He says the QBs have a variety of good options to throw the ball to and adds that the receivers have been catching the ball well in practice. "Those guys can bail you out of a bad situation," he says.

Chris Todd prepares to throw a pass in Monday's 11 on 11 work.

*Auburn's other contestant for the starting quarterback assignment, sophomore Kodi Burns, agrees with Todd about the wide receivers. Burns says there is "no doubt in my mind" the group has improved since last season.

*Coach Tommy Tuberville mentioned several true freshmen at his press conference on Monday who have caught his eye in preseason drills. That group includes wide receiver Darvin Adams, cornerbacks Neiko Thorpe, Harry Adams and D'Antoine Hood and running back Eric Smith.

*The head coach notes that redshirt safety Mike Slade is a player the Tigers will be counting on this season along with sophomore Mike McNeil, a safety the coach says has improved significantly.

*Tristan Davis, the senior running back, continues to make progress, Tuberville notes. Davis, who missed virtually the entire 2007 season with two foot injuries, should be ready for game action with a couple more weeks worth of practices under his belt.

*Redshirt freshman Adam Herring made an interception on a Burns pass in the 11 on 11 work at Monday's first of two practices. The middle linebacker from Shiloh Christian School in Springdale, Ark., led his team to a state title as a high school senior.

*Another young linebacker, true freshman Spencer Pybus, was singled out for good play in Saturday's scrimmage by Tuberville. Pybus says he still has a lot to learn, but adds he feels good about his opening weeks of college football.

*With the opener less than three weeks away, Tuberville notes that tight end Tommy Trott is a guy the offense will be counting on and that his backup, Gabe McKenzie, is much improved.

*The Tigers are getting a break with the weather. The morning practice on Monday was cool and cloudy with a breeze, much less draining on the players than the opening days of preseason workouts. Other recent practices have been cooler than normal for early August.

*Tuberville notes that returning starter Ryan Shoemaker is still the number one punter, but is getting a serious challenge from walk-on Clinton Durst. He says that Clayton Crofoot is the number one holder for field goals and Robert Shiver is looking good as the returning starter on deep snaps.

*The Tigers are expected to have a full speed special teams mini-scrimmage closer to opening game time. AU is expected to have its second scrimmage of the preseason on Saturday and Tuberville notes there could be a half scrimmage after that if the coordinators decide that is necessary.

*The head coach says he expects sixth-year senior Tez Doolittle to be able to contribute in a limited role early in the season at noseguard as he continues to bounce back from an Achilles tendon injury. Doolittle's playing time should increase as the season progress, Tuberville adds.

*Cornerback Walt McFadden, a projected starter, says that he feels better than ever about the way he is playing. He is up to 185 pounds as a redshirt junior. He reported to Auburn weighing just 154 out of Ely High School in Pompano Beach, Fla. Fellow cornerback Jerraud Powers predicts McFadden is ready to have a good junior season.

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