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NFL Training Camp Notes, Tuesday, 8/10/21
From all 32 teams
Training Camp Notes
Raiders: QB Marcus Mariota, TE Foster Moreau are having good camps. I’ve been wrong about stuff like this before, but I can’t see the Raiders trying to trade Mariota. They feel like they can win the Super Bowl right now and we’ve seen how important it can be to have a backup quarterback who you can trust. They also seem open to the idea of using both quarterbacks. I liked Mariota coming out of college, but I never understood the adoration of him after watching him with the Titans for two years. He had some good games, but how much more obvious did it need to be that he wasn’t on a path for long-term start-dom? I don’t find it at all surprising that he is a backup but I root for his success. I love the Ryan Tannehill story, I’d be happy with a Mariota one, too.
Raiders: I wrote a lot about WR Bryan Edwards as a camp star last year and it seems he could win a starting job out of training camp once again.
Eagles: WR Quez Watkins had a “great night” on Sunday and has had a “very good camp.” For a team that has had the worst WR production in the NFL over the last two years, it seems that Watkins and Travis Fulgham are playing well, plus they drafted DeVonta Smith (though he’s missing time with injury), and Jalen Reagor may still be the best receiver on the team. What if it was Carson Wentz?
Eagles: UDFA OL Kayode Awosika has become a threat to make the final 53-man roster.
Seahawks: QB Russell Wilson gave LT Duane Brown an endorsement, saying he thinks he plays like someone at least five years younger than he is and that he can play a few more seasons.
Jets: QB Zach Wilson was shaky in practice on Monday but Robert Saleh wasn’t worried, saying “it will get worse before it gets better.” When WR Elijah Moore needs advice, he turns to former Ole Miss teammates DK Metcalf and A.J. Brown. That’s one hell of an opportunity for an already-hyped receiver. Sixth round rookie LB Hamsah Nasirildeen — who I remember some people absolutely LOVING prior to the draft — has been listed as a starter on the first depth chart.
PFF: Listed 10 day three/UDFA rookies who are impressing in camp: NYJ RB Michael Carter, NYJ CB Michael Carter, KC G Trey Smith, KC TE Noah Gray, PIT CB Shakur Brown, DEN OLB Jonathon Cooper, PHI CB Zech McPhearson, LAC S Mark Webb, TB WR Jaelon Darden, DET RB Jermar Jefferson. Some new names to me, and some familiar ones. McPhearson could be the day three star of the year so far.
KC: Some of the top players at camp on Monday were DL Chris Jones, RB Jerick McKinnon, LB Anthony Hitchens, DL Mike Danna, DT Khalen Saunders.
Colts: Sixth round QB Sam Ehlinger really might be the guy who starts in place of Carson Wentz. That’s terrible news for the career of Jacob Eason. Other “bubble players” doing well include WR DeMichael Harris, TE Farrod Green, OT Will Holden, DT Joey Ivie, DB Andre Chachere.
Panthers: I’m hearing more and more about TE Dan Arnold recently. There’s some concern that Carolina’s new turf field will lead to more injuries. WR Robby Anderson hates the change, but he’s turning heads at camp.
Packers: Acme Packing Company has a question about Jordan Love: What happened to his arm strength? Uh-oh.
Titans: WR Marcus Johnson continues “strong camp” and OLB Derick Roberson beat Taylor Lewan for a sack in practice. CB Caleb Farley got into a little trouble with Mike Vrabel, though it’s nothing serious.
Falcons: CB A.J. Terrell could be the star of Atlanta’s camp and it seems that the Falcons have a player to replace Desmond Trufant. LB Mykal Walker, DE Adetokunbo Ogundeji are mentioned again. CB Isaiah Oliver checked in with a highlight interception on Matt Ryan:
Falcons: Rookie S Richie Grant on competing and losing: “Losing is a part of life, but damn I hate losing,” Grant said Monday as he described the first wristband. “Pingpong, pool, compete at everything. You just keep that mentality when you come out here, compete at everything and it just carries over.”
Saints: WR Michael Thomas seems like a difficult player to work with. There’s no way to justify (to me) going on social media to tell your side of the story. There are no sides. This is immature. Rookie CB Deuce Wallace is working his way into a roster spot.
Patriots: I’ve mentioned WR Nelson Agholor a lot in camp, but apparently his second week was not as good. Inconsistency is part of the package with Agholor, always has been. LB Josh Uche is “the best candidate to be a breakout star.”
Bears: Offseason signing DT Angelo Blackson has had a strong camp and new defensive coordinator Sean Desai seems to be a good fit so far. Chicago could have replaced Vic Fangio with Brandon Staley in 2019, but opted to let Staley go to the Broncos with Fangio. Oops. CB Kindle Vildor is standing out.
Seahawks: Brian Baldinger thinks DE Alton Robinson is poised for a breakout, but this really has nothing to do with training camp. Baldinger goes off of regular season game film, so we’ll see if Robinson emerges in the coming weeks or not. There will be a lot of competition at his spot and Darrell Taylor seems like one guy who definitely has the potential to stay ahead of Robinson. Former Arizona State safety Aashari Crosswell is making a case to stick to the roster.
WFT: Lots of praise for rookie WR Dyami Brown, the guy who Chris Simms rated as the third-best WR in the 2021 class.
Ravens: TE Josh Oliver is fighting to win the number three job in Baltimore, which is significant given that the Ravens have developed some of the best tight ends in the league.
Steelers: Mathew Sexton is working his way into making the roster as a returner, if he continues to play like he did in the first preseason game.
Bills: DT Star Lotulelei sat out 2020 but looks “explosive” in camp. QB Josh Allen is having an “elite” training camp. I recall Efe Obada being a regular star at Panthers training camp, and now he’s a star at Bills training camp. Will he star in the regular season? OL Ryan Bates is proving valuable through versatility. WR Isaiah Hodges had a good day on Monday.
Bucs: WR Antonio Brown is “healthier than ever.”
Texans: Former Broncos DL DeMarcus Walker could start for Houston. Another interesting thing I read is that David Culley won’t have any joint practices this year because the Texans have 53 new players on the roster and they still need to figure themselves out before they face anybody else. There’s optimism around the play of newly-acquired WR Anthony Miller. RB Scottie Phillips is also mentioned.
Bengals: It’s only training camp, but WR Ja’Marr Chase isn’t creating the separation that was hoped for when he was the fifth overall pick. If we judged teams based on training camp stories alone, the Bengals would once again be one of the NFL’s worst teams.
Jaguars: Monday was a good day for QB Trevor Lawrence.
Colts: Quote of the day might come from LB Ben Banogu, who seems to be poised for a breakout season. "I just try to trick myself into thinking I'm a cheetah," Banogu said. "And I just try to run as fast as I can until I get tired."
49ers: WR Trent Sherfield is climbing the depth chart.
Cowboys: More good quotes, this one from LB Micah Parsons:
Vic Fangio: Here’s what the Broncos head coach said about players who “stand out” in training camp and preseason, even if they aren’t actually playing that well:
“Obviously, the big plays catch everybody’s eyes,” Fangio said. “But it’s the consistency (that counts more). Can a guy be reliable to go out there and play and uphold his job throughout the game and not just make a flash play every now and then?
“A great example is defensive players. There are about 65 plays in a game. If a guy has two sacks, instantly everybody thinks he had a great game. Well, he played about 63 other plays — how’d he do in those?”
Rams: It could be RB Xavier Jones or RB Jake Funk behind RB Darrell Henderson. If he’s healthy, Funk could be the guy. He tore his ACL twice in college.
Vikings: WR Dan Chisena barely played college football and made the Vikings as an undrafted free agent on special teams in 2020, but it appears he’s having a good camp offensively too and could carve out a role as a receiver. He caught three passes for 66 yards in his college career at Penn State. TE Tyler Conklin is also having a good camp.
Dolphins: Miami released a depth chart on Monday and the offensive line is so young. LT Austin Jackson was a first round pick in 2020, right guard Robert Hunt went in the second round last year, left guard Liam Eichenberg went in the second round this year, and center Michael Deiter went in the third round in 2019. The only exception is right tackle Jesse Davis. A disappointment is Solomon Kindley, a 2020 fourth round pick who had some good moments as a rookie but fallen behind. I’m a Dolphins skeptic going into the year.
Ravens: Rookie first round WR Rashod Bateman was injured in practice on Tuesday and his status is not yet known.
Will be back with more soon.