Saturday’s practice featured a lot, and things that can be seen on any football team. It all starts with brotherly love. Until friendly bickering turns into shoving.
Manny Wilkins started the tempo portion of practice by helping break down the defensive huddle and giving out hand shakes to his teammates on the other side of the ball. But the sibling friendship between the offense and defense turned into a sibling rivalry toward the end of practice when pushing became a big scrum of giant men on the same team. That’s just football though, as everyone broke up the circle very quickly and things went back to business.
Last Practice: Friday, August 3
Next practice: Monday, August 6 (7:20 p.m.)
Bigger Than You (2 Chainz) In My Feelings (Drake)
After head coach Herm Edwards said the team planned on bringing back Koron Crump back slowly, he meant it. The linebacker was not seen on Saturday night.
With Jalen Harvey making the switch to safety after being a tight end all of his Sun Devil career, a lot of eyes tried to picture on him. But for the second straight night he did not participate in any of the drills. Edwards after practice announced that he is nursing a hamstring strain, explaining the absence on the field.
Jay Jay Wilson only took part in walkthroughs on Friday, observing the field much like a coach. He did return to full speed on Saturday however, working with both the first and second team linebackers.
What went on?
Wilkins and offensive analyst Kevin Mawae started practice with a friendly competition in what appeared in who could hit the upright from the back of the end zone. Mawae hit it first, then said, “[Vinny] Testaverde could do it and he was a Heisman winner.”
Manny Wilkins and Kevin Mawae having a competition trying to hit the upright from the back of the end zone.— Brady (@BradyVernon) August 5, 2018
The quarterback didn’t win. pic.twitter.com/X83X7bYMaz
After practice Mawae cleared up what the two were actually trying to do. And with that, the Testaverde comment made more sense.
We were trying to thread the needle w ball crossing thru uprights...almost impossible!— Kevin Mawae (@KevinMawae) August 5, 2018
On top of encouraging his defensive teammates, Wilkins continued to showcase his leadership, in which most expect from a senior quarterback. During 7-on-7s, Terlon Smith turned his head before securing a catch on a dump off pass. As the ball fell from his hands, Wilkins ran up to him saying, ‘you’re good, keep your head up.’ Tight end Tommy Hudson came up slowly after being sandwiched in the back of the end zone on a contested catch. And yes, Wilkins was right there to make sure he was alright.
A lot of running backs were used on Saturday. Eno Benjamin and Smith of course saw their carries. A.J. Carter and Isaiah Floyd also got first team reps. Smith, Carter and Floyd were all used a lot in the passing game. Floyd caught a lot of eyes with a couple of big gains on rushes and a swing pass.
Those big plays all went to the right side, it seemed most of the successful runs went to more experienced side of guard Steven Miller and tackle Quinn Bailey. That shouldn’t be a shock as Casey Tucker and Alex Losoya are attempting to gain chemistry. The switch to center for Cohl Cabral looks to be smooth sailing as he pulled around to the right side with much success on those big plays behind Miller and Bailey.
On the defensive side of the ball, there were two Wilkins’ passes that should’ve gone the other way during the team’s tempo session. Kobe Williams sat perfectly on a corner route Wilkins tried getting to Frank Darby, Williams would’ve came down with it had Ryan Newsome not broke it up. Chase Lucas also read a screen perfectly and had the potential to walk into the end zone had he not dropped the pass.
Frank Darby caught another touchdown pass. And of course Frank Darby had to say something about the 20-yard catch during 7-on-7s finishing the play with, ‘I’m a monster.’
QB: Manny Wilkins
RB: Eno Benjamin, Trelon Smith, A.J. Carter, Isiah Floyd
WR: N’Keal Harry, Kyle Williams, Terrell Chatman / Frank Darby
TE: Tommy Hudson
OL: Casey Tucker (LT), Alex Losoya (LG), Cohl Cabral (C), Steven Miller (RG), Quinn Bailey(RT)
QB: Dillion Sterling-Cole
RB: Trelon Smith, Brock Sturges
WR: Curtis Hodges, Ryan Newsome, Terrell Chatman / Frank Darby,
TE: Ceejhay French-Love, Jared Bubank
TOL: Tyson Rising (LT), Roy Hemsley (LG), Cade Cote (C), Jarrett Bell (RG), Zach Robertson(RT)
DL: Shannon Forman / Darius Slade, George Lea / Renell Wren, Jalen Bates
*LB: Kyle Soelle, Malik Lawal, Nick Ralston
CB: Kobe Williams, Chase Lucas
Tillman: Tyler Whiley
S: Joey Bryant, Demonte King
DL: Dougladson Subtyl, Jordan Hoyt, D.J. Davidson
*LB: Merlin Robertson, Jay Jay Wilson, Khaylan Thomas,
Tillman: Evan Fields
CB: Terin Adams, Darien Cornay
S: Langston Frederick, Dominique Harrison
*The two groups of linebackers continuously switched with the first and second team defenses.
For other updates and videos from Saturday’s practice, follow @BradyVernon on Twitter.