Washington got their spring football practices kicked off on Monday with a brisk two-plus hour workout in the cool morning air

The Washington Huskies' 2016 season got underway on the western shores of Lake Washington on Monday with a fast-paced, two-hour plus workout...

The Husky staff led the players through their paces and there were a handful of new faces on hand for their first taste of college football.

DE/BUCK Myles Rice was a 2015 signee who greyshirted while he recovered from a knee injury and he was joined by 2016 class members QB Daniel Bridge-Gadd, S Taylor Rapp, P Van Soderberg and DE/BUCK Amandre Williams who all enrolled early.

For those wondering, RB Sean McGrew was hoping to enroll early as well, but he was unable to finish up his credits in time and so he plans to enroll with the other 12 players from the 2016 class at the start of summer.

Unlike last spring, this year, the Huskies did most of their work on the east practice field.

One difference you can see is the comfort level between the coaches and the players.

In year one, the coaches were still trying to remember the players' names while instructing the players on how they wanted things done.

For their part, the players were trying to figure out exactly how the coaches expected them to do different things 

This year, now the third spring for the coaches and most of the players, things are much more efficient. The coaches are demanding precision and excellence and the older players, especially the ones who have been through the ringer already, are helping the younger players get things right. 

In the wide receiver/defensive back one-on-ones, you can see the speed and athleticism that runs throughout the secondary.

Players like Sidney JonesKevin King and Darren Gardenhire all have that length that coaches are looking for at corner and then when you throw in the aggressive nature with which each plays the game, it can make for some fun matchups when the receivers get out there.

One of the better battles of the day was when Dante Pettis and Jones were matched up for a rep. 

QB Jake Browning dropped back and threw a pin-point pass to Pettis who had beaten Jones out of his break to make the grab. 

WR John Ross III showed little ill-effects of the knee injury he suffered last spring. 

His speed is something to behold and he was a mismatch outside for most of the defensive backs.

Former walk-on TE Connor Griffin has moved to wide receiver and while he is still pretty raw, he showed off his soft hands, hauling in a pass while being heavily covered by Ezekiel Turner on one play while catching a ball in front of Gardenhire on the sidelines a little bit later.

Overall, the team looked fit and much bigger.

The offensive line was impressive throughout the day showing the depth that has been evolving over the past couple of years.

When the offense took the field for the first time early on in practice, Trey Adams was working at left tackle, while Jared Hilbers manned the left guard spot. Eventually, veteran Michael Kneip came in and took over left guard duties when the team went into the full 11v11 session.

At right tackle, Kaleb McGary was holding things down and redshirt senior Shane Brostek was a bit of a surprise at right guard.

The second offensive line, while there were some adjustments was Andrew Kirkland (LT), Henry Roberts (LG), Matt James (C), Jesse Sosebee (RG) and Devin Burleson (RT).

The defensive backfield seems pretty set with Budda Baker and Jojo McIntosh at safety and Gardenhire and Jones at corner with Kevin King as the nickel corner.

The front seven on defense is much more influx with the losses of Travis FeeneyCory Littleton and Taniela Tupou to graduation, but there are plenty of bodies to vie for playing time.

The number one defensive line, early on at least, appeared to be Greg Gaines at one of the end spots with Jaylen Johnson and Elijah Qualls inside at defensive tackle and nose tackle respectively. 

Later on, Damion Turpin slid in for Johnson and Gaines moved over to the nose tackle spot.

As far as the linebackers, Joe Mathis was at the BUCK spot while Azeem Victor (MIK), Keishawn Bierria (WIL) and Psalm Wooching (SAM) were at the linebacker spots. 

Vita Vea, who looks like he's in great shape, was the main guy at nose tackle with the second unit while Shane Bowman and Turpin were both flanking him.

The SAM with the second team was sophomore Tevis Bartlett while Connor O'Brien and Bryce Sterk took turns at the BUCK spot.

In the middle were Ben Burr-Kirven and Sean Constantine.

For a more in-depth view of practice, click here for our practice thread with a lot more player observations and one-on-one recaps.

Washington will take Tuesday off before returning back to the practice field on Wednesday morning for their second spring practice.

Players Out/Limited: Some players were limited while others were out of practice altogether. 

Ross, Austin Joyner and John Turner all did individual drills and some one-on-one work, but they were limited in the amount of reps they took.

As far as players who sat out practice -- Jake EldrenkampJared PuluJason ScremposBrandon BeaverQuinten Pounds and John Clark were all in attendance, but they were not actively taking part in things.

Recruits In The House: Washington hosted some big fish on Monday with a pair of St. John Bosco players -- OL Wyatt Davis and WR Terrell Bynum -- and they also were hosting one of the top interior line prospects in the country in Santa Margarita Catholic's Brett Neilon.

 2018 QB Jack Tuttle from Mission Hills in So Cal was also there along with his parents.

Dawgman.com Top Stories