Fall Camp: Sunday Practice Report

SEATTLE - It may be a day off for a lot of people, but for the Washington Football team fall camp continues to chug along. They had another two-hour workout Sunday, but this one was in shorts and helmets after two days in full pads. Was there any position movement? Who stood out?

The offensive highlight of the day was via John Ross. The sophomore receiver, out Saturday with his foot in a boot, was back in action and seemingly not slowed much by whatever kept him out the day before. He connected with Troy Williams on a 53-yard touchdown strike past junior corner Marcus Peters. Kendyl Taylor, also slowed by something with his hand Saturday, was back in action with a heavily-taped up left hand.

Tight End Michael Hartvigson had a taped-up right hand, but that didn’t stop him and Joshua Perkins from practicing. They were out Saturday. And a player that has been wearing yellow for the majority of fall camp, linebacker Scott Lawyer, was back in action and playing with the number-two linebacking corp with Keishawn Bierria and Cory Littleton. Three redshirt freshmen - Azeem Victor, Sean Constantine, and Connor O’Brien, made up the number three LB corps today.

Offensively, while Williams had that beautiful pass to Ross, those plays were few and far between when it came to the quarterbacks today. They didn’t do poorly; they just didn’t stand out in many ways. Overall it seemed a pretty pedestrian day for Williams, Cyler Miles, Jeff Lindquist, and K.J. Carta-Samuels. Part of that should definitely be placed at the hands of the receiver unit, who continue to have average days catching the ball. Brayden Lenius had a great high-point catch over Sidney Jones near the end of practice, but overall the receivers didn’t have much to shout about.

Darrell Daniels continues to show up at tight end, though - and freshman Drew Sample continued to show off his strong hands, coming up with a couple of diving passes from Carta-Samuels.

Lavon Coleman and Dwayne Washington continue to get a lot of reps at running back, just in front of Jesse Callier and Deontae Cooper. Since they aren’t in pads Sunday it’s hard to really get a good gauge as to who is standing out, but Washington did have a very nice sideline catch of a Williams pass during a scramble.

The offensive line continues to progress. While Micah Hatchie, Dexter Charles and Colin Tanigawa got a ton of work with the ones the last few days, OL Coach Chris Strausser has been mixing Jake Eldrenkamp, Sifa Tufunga, and Mike Criste back in the mix with the ones two, continuing the position battles.

What was interesting about the OL was when you looked deeper down the seating chart. Andrew Kirkland was used at both left and right tackle at times, and frosh Matt James was the first frosh off the bench to play with the ones. He was at right tackle.

Defensively, the play of the day was from true frosh defensive end Jaylen Johnson, who is also doing a little BUCK linebacker too. He went out to defend a walk-on receiver, Taelon Parson, in the flat, and when Parson couldn’t handle a Jeff Lindquist pass thrown right to his hands, Johnson was Jaylen-On-The-Spot to collect the bobbling ball. The whole defense was fired up on that play.

It was good to see redshirt frosh Elijah Qualls back in the mix with the number two defensive tackles behind Danny Shelton and Evan Hudson. Qualls had been a little bit dinged up, but he played the full Sunday practice. Damion Turpin and Tani Tupou were also in there, and frosh Will Dizzly, at 274 pounds, is right in the mix too.

At the ends, Psalm Wooching continues to get some quality time with the twos, and Johnson and Shane Bowman worked Sunday with the threes. Greg Gaines, Kaleb McGary, and Vita Vea mixed and matched with the three defensive line.

Monday Scrimmage: Plans are for Washington to have a scrimmage Monday, but it’s off limits to the media or the public. The next practice open the public will be on Wednesday at 4:30 pm at Husky Stadium. The team will also be available for Picture Day after the practice, which is set to finish around 6:15 pm.

Special Teams Update: It was an interesting kicking battle today between Cameron Van Winkle, Mitch Johnson, and Tristan Vizcaino. Van Winkle made a kick from 35 yards, and then made another from 42 when Johnson and Vizcaino missed from 35. But at the end of the practice, when the whole team gathered around the kickers and tried to make them as uncomfortable as possible - Van Winkle missed his kick from 35, while Johnson and Vizcaino made theirs. I’d say it’s game on, with the starting kicking job still very much up in the air.

The punt unit lined up 11-11 for the first time this fall, and Korey Durkee boomed some big-time kicks. No one has ever disputed his leg strength, just his consistency. But it looks like the junior from Gig Harbor has the starting spot as long as he can continue to show what he’s done in practice to date. Tristan Vizcaino is the other punter in the mix, there are no other kickers that have punted so far this fall.

What was interesting about the punt period wasn’t the punter, but the returner. Marvin Hall has been returning punts for UW for the better part of two years, but the first man returning punts Sunday was Jaydon Mickens, followed by Hall. Kasen Williams and John Ross were the other two returners used by Chris Petersen when they worked out returning punts.

They have not yet attempted anything in the kick return game so far this fall.

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