There were 52 participants this morning with the new faces being Dominique Allen with the running backs, T-Bob Hebert and Greg Shaw with the offensive line, Chase Clement with the defensive line, and Jhyryn Taylor with the wide receivers. Only one player wore the green non-contact jersey in Chancey Aghayere and there were quite a few pro scouts on hand from the Eagles, Chiefs, 49ers, Saints, Lions, Texans, and Broncos to watch the Tigers workout in shells – helmets, shoulder pads and shorts.
The running backs worked in agility with the ropes and diagonal dummies at the beginning with a strong follow through at the end of the drill at the tackling dummy’s expense. It appeared to be the typical order of Charles Scott, Keiland Williams, Richard Murphy, Trindon Holliday and Allen. The older guys seem to like Allen commenting on the big guy’s nimble feet. “Like a ballerina..,” said Keiland Williams.
The quarterbacks were on target for the most part with Jordan Jefferson taking the first snaps and throwing some pretty balls on the fade warm ups. Lee seems to have great mechanics and received some compliments on his throws from Gary Crowton.
The wide receivers appeared to catch everything within reach and worked on stop routes and slants after the fade warm-up. The order was Brandon Lafell, Terrance Toliver, R.J. Jackson, Chris Mitchell, Jhyryn Taylor, Chris Tolliver and Jarred Joseph.
The tight ends were working exclusively on their releases and stance fundamentals for the most part of the four periods (17 minutes) we were allowed in. Richard Dickson led the group followed by Mitch Joseph and Alex Russian.
The offensive line saw newcomers Shaw and Hebert, who were working at left tackle and center respectively, while the entire line unit received instruction on zone blocking to the second level for nearly three of the periods.
The linebackers and defensive linemen both participated in a drill that Defensive Coordinator John Chavis put together which involved two massive medicine balls, ground dummies, and a tackling dummy on a pad so the players could work on tackling low. The two medicine balls were tossed towards the feet of the defender and pushed downward followed by some quick footwork and a full-on low tackle to finish.
Harry Coleman was extremely impressive in this drill with awesome speed and strong tackling. This drill is evidence of Chavis’ desire to keep chop blocks and cuts ineffective against the front seven and harps on quickness, technique and following through. It was also impressive for the pro scouts in attendance.
The defensive backs were working on side stepping through the line of scrimmage to the tackle and it was easy to see that the leaders in this group were Chad Jones and Patrick Peterson. Morris Claiborne was very impressive with his athleticism and draws comparisons to Peterson in terms of smoothness. He was one of the more fluid corners out there with the way he turned and ran. Brandon Taylor was also back with the varsity along with Karnell Hatcher.
We will have video and photos from the morning session and we will be back out there this afternoon for the late session which gets started at 3:45 p.m.
Players attending this morning’s session:
QB: Jordan Jefferson, Jarrett Lee
RB: Charles Scott, Keiland Williams, Richard Murphy, Trindon Holliday, Dominique Allen
WR. Brandon Lafell, Terrance Toliver, Chris Mitchell, R.J. Jackson, Jhyryn Taylor, Jarred Joseph, Chris Tolliver
TE: Richard Dickson, Mitch Joseph, Alex Russian
OL: Ciron Black, Josh Dworacyzk, P.J. Lonergan, Lyle Hitt, Joseph Barksdale, Greg Shaw, Chris Faulk, T-Bob Hebert, Will Blackwell, Alex Hurst
LB: Perry Riley, Jacob Cutrera, Harry Coleman, Ryan Baker, Kelvin Sheppard, Kyle Prater
DB: Patrick Peterson, Chad Jones, Chris Hawkins, Danny McCray, Jai Eugene, Brandon Taylor, Morris Claiborne, Karnell Hatcher
DL: Rahim Alem, Drake Nevis, Pep Levingston, Al Woods, Charles Alexander, Akiem Hicks, Chancey Aghayere, Lavar Edwards, Chase Clement
K/P: Derek Helton, Josh Jasper