DAY FOUR: Hollywood Bob's Detailed Practice Report

Friday the Gators go into full pads and there will be lots of contact, but Thursday morning, the Gators were in their shells (all their pads from the waist up) for their first practice session with the entire team on one field. Up until Thursday, the freshmen and some of the second teamers had been in one practice while the veterans and those expected to compete for the first unit were in another. Here are highlights of the Thursday a.m. session:

Movers and Shakers:

Drew Miller was on the first team offensive line today at right guard as Jim Tartt continues to come back from shoulder surgery … Carlton Medder was the second team right guard today after playing first team yesterday ... I am hearing that Tartt is just on the side as a precaution right now. The coaches know he goes at it hard and don't want him to over do it early ... I noticed in the secondary the backup corners are Tremaine McCollum and Avery Atkins. Reggie Nelson is the backup at the nickel back. I think that was all of the two deep moves that I noticed ... I didn't notice running back Skyler Thornton in drills, but probably just an oversight on my part as he was out there in gear ... Kenneth Tookes was in on some first team plays but Jemalle Cornelius was inserted on a great deal of the first team today, as expected ... The second team defensive line from right to left is Joe Cohen, Lutrell Alford, Clint McMillan, and Derrick Harvey. Nyan Boateng and David Nelson played a significant part of the second team snaps at wide receiver … Tony Joiner was conspicuously absent from the second team at safety. The second teamers were DeShawn Carter and Terrance Holmes.

Plays of the Practice:

Dallas Baker had a couple of great moves in the one-on-one's today that left defenders dragging. He was very exclamatory after the catch and was fun to watch. We caught a few more plays on video … check it out ... Chad Jackson taught Reggie Nelson a lesson on one play ... Andre Caldwell followed that by knocking Avery Atkins on his kiester and finishing his route.

Dallas Baker had some nifty moves today


Leak opened up the session with a 20-yard skinny post completion to Andre Caldwell ... Second team defense kept Leak on the move in the backfield (remember no pads yet) … First team defense sacked Portis on the first play in their team session ... Four plays later Portis got away from two before the third defender sacked him ... Earl Everett blitzed and got a sack on Portis. Jeremy Mincey deflected a Portis pass ... Dee Webb spun David Nelson around to knock the ball down before it got to Nelson ... Brandon Siler broke up a pass intended for Gavin Dickey.

Player of the Practice:

I thought Dee Webb had his best practice of the fall today. He seemed much more in tune with the receivers he was facing and really made some nice plays both in one-on-ones and the team session.

Solid as a Rock:

Jeremy Mincey broke up a couple of passes by deflection. He has a knack for batting down passes and he has played well all week. Siler was more in the face of people today, which is exactly what people are expecting of him this year.

Freshman of Influence:

David Nelson seems to be making his move for quality playing time. The Gators need a couple of receivers to provide relief for the starters in games.

What I Liked:

Boateng and Nelson are really going to be good players. Again, Coach Billy Gonzalez was on Boateng for dropping the ball and running the wrong route. Gonzalez only rides the players for whom he has the highest expectations.

What I Didn't Like:

A fumble by Boateng on a shovel pass wasn't pretty … The second offense was pretty much dominated by the first defense during team drills ... None of the new linebackers were with the second unit which needs depth help. It is still way early to be judgmental there ... I haven't seen a whole lot from Skyler Thornton nor do I remember a single highlight from Deshawn Wynn all week.

Heard It On The Field:

Coach Billy Gonzalez, when David Nelson made a fingertip catch in the corner of the endzone after stretching out his 6-6 frame: "Good job David, nice grab, that's what you're here for."

Heater is very vocal on the practice field, positive and negative. When one defensive back hit the grass in coverage: "Anybody can fall down. No more falling down … hell, I can fall down!!" When one defender stood his ground and went through the receiver to get to the ball and knock it away, Heater was heard screaming: "I love it … Ohhhhhh, do I love that!!"

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