SPRING DAY 3: Pads on, Wheaton flyin' high

CORVALLIS -- The Beavs wore pads for the first time this year. Most of the third practice session of the spring was dedicated to installing formations and running plays on both sides of the ball. As the lengthy practice wound down, the Beavs went 11-on-11, offense vs. defense.

Practice Snapshot:
11:00 Players stretch, QB's warm up arms
11:05 Individuals
11:15 Special teams, kickoffs (Trevor Romaine looked good on kickoffs, consistently getting to the middle of the end zone, including one that nailed Lomax in the back of the end zone.)
11:25 Special teams, punts (Both Keith Kostol and Tim McMullen looked consistent, hitting solid punts 40-50 yards. "We won't know till the games start but from what I've seen at practice, our punting has looked really good, both guys," said Mike Riley. The 11-on-11 were full speed and thud contact, but without taking the ball carrier down.
11:40 Offensive/Defensive walk-through
11:50 Individuals
12:10 One-on-one's (WR's vs. DB's)
12:25 Team offense/Team defense
1:05 Offense vs. Defense 11-on-11
1:25 7-on-7
1:35 11-on-11
1:55 7-on-7

Depth Chart with Day 3 practice notes
Offensive Line: Similar story to the first two days. Only eight offensive lineman participated in team drills. In a day dedicated much to running the ball, the o-line struggled opening up holes for running backs. There was noticeable improvement, however, toward the end of practice, with Addie and Andrews leading the way..

Left Tackle:
Justin Addie
Colin Kelly

Left Guard:
Josh Andrews

Center:
Roman Sapolu
Jake Welch

Right Guard:
Mike Beaton
David Vieru

Right Tackle:
Michael Philipp
Derek Nielsen

More Notable Notes: With Kelly sidelined during contact drills, Addie took majority of snaps during the team periods. Opened big holes a couple of times for Ward. Kelly participated in individual non-contact drills. At right guard, only Beaton and Vieru participated in the first practice splitting reps between first and second teams. Philipp at right tackle got more action with the first team than did Nielsen.

Wide Receivers: Across the board, the receivers were very impressive in the first day with pads. Wheaton in particular looked on a different level, burning Poyer with wicked moves for long touchdowns on three occasions. Gwacham and Mullaney were also very impressive, winning in one-on-ones and coming down with good grabs in the team periods.

Flanker:
Brandin Cooks
Micah Hatfield

Split End:
Markus Wheaton
Richard Mullaney
Geno Munoz
Jeff Bedbury

Slotback:
Obum Gwacham
Kevin Cummings
Mitch Singler
Kramer Ferrell
*Jordan Bishop

More Notable Notes: Cooks looked great on this day, especially after the catch. He's been consistent all three days in catching the football as well, which was his biggest problem last year. Wheaton, however, was the most impressive Beaver on Saturday, Working at split end, Wheaton dominated Poyer throughout practice. One move in particular, along the sideline, caused Poyer to completely bite. Wheaton also burned Poyer on another occasion with pure speed on a go route. (more on Poyer later). Also at split end, Mullaney has caught the eye of Riley. "He's kind of deceptively fast. I think that he'll run by some people because they don't think he's as fast as he is. He has great hands, great toughness, and is a good route runner. He's a good player and this is his time to break into the rotation," said Riley. Has Riley been surprised by Gwacham? "I'm not surprised but I'm really excited about Gwacham. That continues to be exciting for me," he said. Bishop participated in individuals and ran latter drills on the sideline during team practice.

Tight Ends/H Backs:
Colby Prince
Connor Hamlett
Tyler Perry
Kellen Clute
Caleb Smith

A lot has been said about early arrival Caleb Smith, but what about Prince? "Wonderful kid, really smart. I think he's probably in the great shape of his life and I think he's found a good weight he can play at. He has a lot of leadership qualities, works really hard, and should have a good year," said Riley. As for Smith, on Day 3 it was apparent he's still learning the offense and he struggled at times with assignments in the run game.

Running Backs: "The thing that they have to do, No. 1, is be assignment perfect and secondly, take care of the ball. After that it's a matter of production. They have to be runners as well as pass protectors and receivers. If they don't take care of the ball though, they're not playing. They're pretty good about that though and they're a very conscientious group," said Riley.

Tailbacks:
Malcolm Agnew
Terron Ward
Storm Woods
Jordan Jenkins
*Jovan Stevenson

More Notable Notes: Agnew was explosive and quick through the hole all day. Made a defender miss badly on one play with an elusive move. He was stripped toward the end of practice by Reynolds, which was an issue with Agnew last year in addition to his hamstrings, which have looked good through three days. Ward had the longest run of the day where he picked up 20-plus yards before being touched. He did fumble on another occasion, however. Stevenson, who is recovering from injury, practiced in individual drills again but ran separately on the sideline during team sessions.

Quarterbacks: Mannion was particularly sharp throwing the long ball on Day 3. He connected deep with Wheaton, Cooks, Mullaney and Cummings on multiple occasions. It was also the first practice that didn't include an interception by any of the quarterbacks.

QBs:
Sean Mannion
Cody Vaz
Jack Lomax
Richie Harrington

More Notable Notes: Again, Mannion was locked in Saturday on the deep balls -- and looked solid on the timing out routes as well. Mannion's arm looks strong, and his decision making has been very good thus far in the early spring.

Defensive Line: The d-line stuffed the run all day, blowing up many plays in the backfield. "I really, really like the look of the front four today. They did a good job stopping the run," said Riley.

Left Defensive End
Scott Crichton
Devon Kell
Rusty Fernando
Lavonte Barnett

Left Defensive Tackle
Mana Rosa
Joe Lopez
Brandon Bennett
*Castro Masaniai

Right Defensive Tackle
Andrew Seumalo
Desmond Collins
Mana Tuivailala
Noa Aluesi

Right Defensive End
Dylan Wynn
Rudolf Fifita
John Braun
Na'Alii Robins
*Blake Harrah

More Notable Notes: Crichton applied constant pressure and from a variety of angles. Rosa consistently plugged up the middle. Seumalo also helped Rosa clog up the middle to stop run plays for short to no gains. Masaniai ran with a trainer on the sideline and did later work without any sign of a limp. He's still not participating in any of the practice, however. Harrah also did not participate.

Linebackers: "I like the two outside backers, they really look athletic and fast. Doctor and D.J. Welch look real good. Doctor is in the best shape of his life and Welch can really run," said Riley.

SAM Linebacker
D.J. Welch
Jabral Johnson
Will Storey
Kyle Egan

MIK Linebacker:
Feti Unga
Rueben Robinson
Josh Williams
Jaswha James
Kyle Gardner
Charlie Gilmur

WIL Linebacker:
Michael Doctor
Cade Cowdin
Shaydon Akuna
Zeke Sanders

More Notable Notes: Welch was indeed very fast all day. He's certainly one player that Riley has seemed particularly excited about going forward. Unga filled holes very nicely during team run, and wrapped up nicely as well. Doctor flew around the field all day long, both in run support as well as in coverage.

Secondary: "The first four guys in our secondary are great, but we need to find more corners and safeties to fill in behind the starters," said Riley.

Left Cornerback:
Jordan Poyer
Keynan Parker
*Larry Scott

Safety:
Ryan Murphy
Peter Ashton

Safety:
Tyrequek Zimmerman
*Anthony Watkins

Right Cornerback:
Rashaad Reynolds
*Sean Martin
Malcolm Marable
*Brian Watkins

More Notable Notes: Poyer, arguably the Beavs' best corner and who shined on Day 2, just didn't look like himself on this day, getting victimized by Wheaton on multiple occasions. Parker didn't participate because of a mild sprained ankle. Murphy nearly had an interception when he jumped a crossing route, but collided with Poyer and was unable to pull it in. Zimmerman broke up a couple of passes early in practice and looked solid in run support. Anthony Watkins participated in individuals including pursuit drill, but sat out contact drills. Reynolds had a hard time covering Cooks in one-on-ones, but was great during team run, stripping Agnew on the sideline and recovering it before falling out of bounds.


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