Saturday Morning: Notes of Note

Here's our observations of what went down in another scrappy morning practice. Lane was among the OBR crew on hand and offers this report of who impressed and who did not...

Sights and observations from Saturday morning's practice in Berea:

- TE Kellen Winslow did not practice with the team this morning, but was on the field in shorts talking to receivers during drills. Winslow is not injured, the team monitors the physical practice activity of the tight-end, leading to him having the session off.

- WR Donte Stallworth was in pads, but did not participate in contact drills.

- RB Jason Wright worked with a team trainer and did not participate in drills.

- Rookie DE Brian Schaefering was not on the field for the morning practice session.

- OG Seth McKinney walked off the field and into the training facility mid-way through the practice session after turning an ankle.

- TE Steve Heiden left the practice session early due to an apparent knee injury.

- OG Rex Hadnot returned to practice after sitting out the session on Friday, due to an ankle issue.

- The defensive line did not dominate the point of attack drills on Saturday morning, but there were numerous plays of interest. The offensive line practiced with a little more fire in the belly, which led some bumping and talking, along with a skirmish between starting center Hank Fraley and Shaun Smith. Fraley has been on the receiving end of some the aggressive play coming from the defensive line. On one specific play, Smith beat Fraley, it appeared the usually talkative Smith had something to say to Fraley, which led to the two players locking up before being separated. As they normally do when an encounter as such transpires, the coaches pulled Smith for the balance of the drill. RG Rex Hadnot got off to a slow start in the practice session, being beaten by Corey Williams and Shaun Rogers on a couple occasions before settling in and finishing the session on a high note.

- Backup OG Lennie Friedman was very effective in this session, the veteran has been consistent prior to taking Chase Pittman and Louis Leonard to school on consecutive plays.

- On consecutive plays in line drills, Rogers and Robaire Smith drove starting OG Eric Steinbach deep into the backfield. Steinbach has some trouble with large, physical defensive linemen.

- Starting OLB Willie McGinest has been impressive in the early days of this training camp. In this session, McGinest beat starting RT Kevin Shaffer on two occasions off the edge in line drills and 11-on-11 team drills with a strong shoulder dip hand jockeying speed move. McGinest also dropped into coverage on another occasion, nearly intercepting a pass intended for tight-end Darnell Dinkins.

- OLB Antwan Peek was relatively quiet in the practice session, but on one occasion blew by Issac Sowells with a spin move. Peek setup the lineman who was overcompensating to the outside, on his right leg.

- Second-year FB Charles Ali made his presence felt in the blocking scheme, fending off the challenges of Peek, Kris Griffin and Leon Williams.

- Starting QB Derek Anderson again was solid in practice. In the controlled setting, Anderson threw the short to intermediate ball well, as well as hitting WR Braylon Edwards in stride on a picture-perfect deep go-route, beating rookie CB Damon Jenkins and S Steve Cargile. In what may have been his only legitimate poor throw of the morning, Anderson badly under-threw an open Edwards streaking down the far hash-mark. A.J. Davis was beaten in coverage and would have been flagged for pass interference, if this was a game condition.

- With Jason Wright on the sidelines, rookie Travis Thomas and Austin Scott received plenty of reps again Saturday morning. Scott has some pop in his game, but Thomas has been stealing the thunder with numerous fine rushing attempts and considerable ability in the receiving game coming out of the backfield.

- TE Brad Cieslak was the beneficiary of Heiden missing part of the practice session. Cieslak, a solid pass catching tight-end hauled in numerous passes during the Saturday morning session. Cieslak is deceivingly quick and runs fluid routes, he was impressive getting his shoulder squared up-field after receptions.

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