Practice News & Notes

The Golden Eagles wrapped up their toughest spring practice of the year yesterday. The sun was out and bearing down, and the intensity level was high, as usual. The players seem to be practicing with more and more intensity as the days go by, especially the guys battling for positions. Here are a few observations from yesterday's practice

-Max Mason was not participating in practice for the second straight practice, but he was again out on the field in a red non-contact jersey. While drills were going on, Mason was off to the side doing his own mini-drills working on his footwork and route breaks. I thought this was a really impressive thing to see, considering he could have just stood there and watched. Considering he's out on the field, and doing small drills on his own accord, I doubt his injury is anything to be seriously concerned about.

-It was a good day for both quarterbacks. Both Lloyd and Soter made some good throws, and were far more consistent. Having to miss team drills continues to hurt Lloyd, though, as Sloter looked very impressive in team drills. Sloter is getting a jump by being able to throw to guys that are being covered, whereas Lloyd can only throw when the receivers are uncovered. Both QBs looked like they took a step in the right direction though, and Coach Monken seemed really pleased by that.

-Cooper Harrington had a good day at practice in the slot. I'm starting to think Drew and I might have the magic touch, as it seems every day we request a player for an interview, they always seem to have a good day at practice. Harrington was getting a ton of separation, and showed great hands, especially in the end zone drills.

-There was a small skirmish between a couple of players during team drills when one of the receivers gained a good bit of separation from the DB, caught the ball, and the DB pushed him out of bounds with a little more force than the receiver deemed necessary. The coaches did a great job getting things under control, and immediately jumped into the next drill to get the players mind's back to practice. The coaches kept the players out of drills for a few plays, and the two players later shook hands and talked it out. These types of things happen in practices from time to time, especially with the amount of intensity, and when guys are battling for positions. The coaches handled it really well, though.

-I continue to be impressed with the exuberance that Coach Pollard shows in drills. During one endzone drill, Pollard pulled CB Kalan Reed off of Chris Briggs and put in someone else. Pollard walked past Briggs and said, "Fresh meat, Briggs. No way you're catching this one." Pollard continued to playfully "trash talk" Briggs up until the play was ran, and Briggs went up and made a great one handed catch in the back of the end zone. Pollard just laughed and shook his head. Even he seems to know Briggs has been unstoppable this spring. Pollard seems like the type of coach that is having genuine fun on the field. His group is really buying into his style, and I expect the DBs to be a much improved group this year.

-I saw Chris Briggs drop one pass at practice. I'm pretty sure it's the first one I've actually seen him drop. It was just the one, though, he pretty much caught everything else.

-The offensive line spent extensive time working on their ability to come off of one block and pick up a new man. The idea with the offensive line seems to be to take one thing, and focus on it intently to be sure it gets mastered.

These were my main takeaways from practice yesterday. The Golden Eagle will be at it again tomorrow. Friday will be the first scrimmage for the team, a highly anticipated event for everyone on the field.

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