On Tuesday afternoon, the Missouri Tigers resumed spring football practice with a fully padded two-and-a-half hour workout on Faurot Field.
"Overall, I thought that practice was pretty good," said Coach Pinkel. "A lot of coaches don't like going on break and then starting practices over again. They don't think that they get the intensity level. They think it takes a couple of days to get things going………………………………………. I thought overall, as the practice went along, I thought we had a really good day. I think we did a lot of good things. Obviously, there's a lot of things we have to get better at, but I thought we became a better football team today."
There is some news regarding injured players. James Franklin, Henry Josey, Marvin Foster, and Mark Hill watched practice in street clothes. Coach Pinkel talked about Franklin's surgery, which he referred to as a "labrum tear repair".
"We talked to the people who trained Drew Brees, and gave him treatments, and how they got him throwing, and all of the different things that they did," said Coach Pinkel. "We've got a pretty good background on that………………………………………… We're glad it was repaired. We think it was the right thing to do without question. You know, (Franklin) is a pretty special guy! He'll heal quick. He works tremendously hard in the training room. That's so much of it. And, so much of it is having a great attitude………………………………………….. Him having a great attitude, and believing that he can get better, and that he can heal a hundred percent in a timely way, I think he feels that way."
Coach Pinkel was asked if there's a chance that Franklin would miss a game or two?
"We're expecting that he won't (miss games)," replied Coach Pinkel. "But to say that that can't happen, I can't say that……………………………….. We feel that he can get ready to play."
Coach Pinkel also said that Henry Josey will have his ACL surgery in a couple of weeks or so.
Elvis Fisher did not wear red, and he got some live snaps on Tuesday. Coach Pinkel said that Fisher won't scrimmage this week, but that he's making significant progress. Fisher alternated with Taylor Chappell on the first unit, and Mike Boddie also worked some at left tackle with the second team.
L'Damian Washington incurred a mild concussion during one of the drills, and sat out the rest of practice. Anthony Gatti continued to wear a red jersey and sat out all drills, as did Brad Madison, Sheldon Richardson, and Dan Carpenter. Connor McGovern wore a red pull-over, and participated in some drills.
During the 9-on-9 short-yardage drill, Kendial Lawrence took a Corbin Berkstresser hand-off and started up inside, where he was met right away by Matt Hoch, among others, who made the stop for no gain. Lawrence ran up inside, and broke free for a big gain. Then, Kony Ealy got into the backfield and threw Marcus Murphy for a loss. Jared McGriff-Culver ran up inside for a short gain, where he was met by Braylon Webb. Lawrence ran left, and was met with purpose by Kenronte Walker and Will Ebner, who made the stop after a short gain.
During 7-on-7s, Berkstresser checked off to Lawrence out in the left flat for about 5 yards. Berkstresser stuck one in to Eric Waters on a cross. Braylon Webb was right there to make the stop, but Waters held on for about 7 yards. Berkstresser dropped one off to Murphy out in the left flat for another 7 yard gain. Tavon Bolden was in the neighborhood. Berkstresser's pass intended for Jimmie Hunt down the right sideline was broken up by Zaviar Gooden. Gooden actually caught the pass, but he came down out of bounds. Later, Berkstresser found Darius White deep down the right side for a score. Ian Simon broke up Berkstresser's next pass. Berkstresser found T.J. Moe on a cross for a first down. Berkstresser hit Marcus Lucas near the first down marker along the left sideline. Gooden was there to knock him out of bounds. Berkstresser held the ball, then threw it late across the middle intended for Moe. Gooden was there to knock the football away. That one could have been picked.
Ashton Glaser's first pass fell harmlessly to the turf. Then, Glaser pulled it down and scrambled out to the left for a first down. Glaser found Greg White with a swing pass out in the left flat for near first down yardage. Later, Glaser got it out to McGriff-Culver near the right sideline for a short gain. Robert Steeples had the coverage. Glaser found Bud Sasser out along the left sideline, where he was run out of bounds by Donovan Bonner.
During 1-on-1 pass rush drills, Kony Ealy used a double move to beat Justin Britt. Michael Sam used a double move to pick up a win over Elvis Fisher. Britt won the return match over Ealy. Jack Meiners stone-walled Jimmy Burge. Lucas Vincent bull-rushed his way past Max Copeland. Mitch Morse picked up a win over Burge.
During the Tiger Drill, Darius White powered his way past Ernest Payton. Ernest Payton tackled Marcus Murphy. Tyler Hunt ran through David Johnson's tackle attempt. Jordan Wade ran through and over Kevie Defranc. Rolandis Woodland spun through Cortland Browning's attempted tackle. Wesley Leftwich ran through Kyle Peasel's attempted tackle.
During 11-on-11 action, which began as a 2-minute drill, Berkstresser hit Moe on an out route near the sideline for about 5 yards. Berkstresser got it to Eric Waters on a crossing route for a nice gain. Nice throw and catch in front of Walker and Gooden. Berkstresser found L'Damian Washington near the left sideline for a first down. Gooden was there to make the stop.
Lawrence took a Berkstresser hand-off and ran up inside for about 5 yards. Ealy sacked Berkstresser. Marcus Murphy took it up inside for no gain. Ebner and Matt Hoch were there to make the stop. Ealy had his hand on Berkstresser before Berkstresser completed a pass to Waters over the middle. I think it was whistled dead before the pass was thrown.
Glaser handed the ball to McGriff-Culver, who was met in the backfield by Shane Ray. George White was there to help clean it up, as the play was thrown for a loss. Ray and Andrew Wilson were in Glaser's face, and forced him to unload the football. Greg White took a hand-off, and was met in the backfield by Bonner, Ray, and Burnett for a loss of 2 yards.
Glaser handed it to McGriff-Culver who ran around the left side for a nice gain. Glaser found Sasser out in the left flat. Sasser quickly turned it up the left sideline for a nice gain. Glaser's pass intended for Jimmie Hunt near the left sideline was incomplete.
In the red zone, Kony Ealy batted down Berkstresser's pass at the line of scrimmage. Braylon Webb broke up Berkstresser's pass attempt intended for Waters in the right front corner of the end zone. Berkstresser rolled right under pressure and threw the ball away. Murphy took a hand-off and ran it up inside where he was met by Wilson, Walker and others after a short gain. Braylon Webb came up to stop Lawrence for no gain. Bolden and Ealy were there also.
Glaser handed it to Greg White, who stumbled forward for 2-3 yards. Glaser's lateral pass was thrown behind Greg White out in the left flat. White reached back to make the catch and picked up a few yards before he was run out of bounds. George White sacked Glaser before he had a chance to set up to throw. Glaser's pass in the back right corner of the end zone was complete to Sasser. It looked like Sasser got a foot down in the end zone after he made the grab, but I'm not sure how it was ruled on the field. Sasser made another nice catch in the end zone, this one on a crossing route where the ball was thrown low and in front of him.
Among those players who caught my eye on Tuesday were Braylon Webb, who catches my eye pretty much every day, and Bud Sasser, who is back at full strength after missing almost all of spring practice to date.
Webb makes plays all over the field, in the run game as well as in coverage. The now healthy Sasser once again showed the ability to catch the football in traffic. He's bigger now, too, which makes him even more physically imposing.