Both Brown and Mathews were on the field, but didn't take any snaps. Brown did come out and sign autographs after practice, but maybe they were being careful. I didn't take notes, so I'll just ramble my impressions. The guys on the sidelines were really down on pictures of formations this year, so I put away the camera early. Here's one of the DLine though.
All the backup running backs got carries with no Tolbert or Mathews. Todman had a nice run right up the middle in a short yardage drill. Odim had some nice carries too. Rivers was really dialed into the short yardage throws in the flats, all were right on target. Rivers was sharp all afternoon, no interceptions. There was one botched snap early, it looked for a moment like his knee might have been tweaked, but he was fine.
I was impressed by Mouton, but did see him getting an earful from the LB coach. I can't say I noticed Butler, but it was hard to track everything. One interesting drill had Manusky line up some ball boys and trash cans with helmets on them in a fake offensive formation. He would put the ball boys in motion and the defense would have to make their adjustments and shout out the movement. As near as I could tell 'lucky star' was motion to the defensive left and 'rocky star' the right. Manusky let them hear it if they didn't 'shout that motherfucker up.' The coaches on the defensive side of the ball are much louder than I remember from last year, they definitely have a presence on the field. Bisaccia was also very much in charge on the special teams drills. They spent a lot of snaps on punts, Cason and Crayton seem to be the guys, they also had WR Bryan Waters back there. I was surprised not to see Goodman, he looked really good to me last year.
Frank Summers is fun to watch and runs and blocks hard. He kinda played to the crowd by running out plays after initial contact, one of the defensive coaches told him to knock that off, it was pretty funny. He looks like a load, but I don't see how the roster can afford to have two FBs on the roster. I didn't notice Brinkley take any snaps. Shareece Wright looked good in individual drills, but seemed to come up limping at one point.
The receivers were pretty non-descript, Ajirotutu looked the best, but dropped a few too. Nobody popped open for any deep balls and the windows were pretty tight on the 7 on 7s. Color me impressed with Tolzein, very accurate, hit a lot of different targets and just seemed to be in charge when barking out signals. He was intercepted once when CJ Wallace made a nice move and jumped a route, Rivers didn't have any picked. Sperry had an excellent practice, he caught everything thrown his way and looked much bigger than I remembered him.
Martin did get some nice pressure more than once, the DLine just looks solid and ready to play. English and Gates are on the DL, Mathews was out, VJ and Tolbert can't report until Friday, the same for Spikes and Sanders, so it's hard to get a real feel yet. I hope to hit some practices next week, I'm sure things will tighten up then.
Most of the Rookies came out to sign autographs, which was cool, but it was a nice surprise to see A. Barnes, M. Tolbert and Takeo Spikes out signing. I'm not sure if folks didn't recognize Spikes, but he signed mini-Dabolts hat with very few folks around him.
Over a decade in football and still nice about signing autographs, how do you not like that?