Same spot. Different day. I sit at the 47 yard line once more, get cozy and check my Twitter feed. The first thing I discover, courtesy of Brenda Stidham (Denver Horse Force), is that new acquisition Steve Vallos will be wearing Joe Mays’ old No. 51 jersey.
It has been an interesting development that Jack Del Rio has been switching things up with the Defensive Backs, primarily at the Safety position. Duke Ihenacho has definitely earned time with the first unit simply because he has had an Interception each day so far, and two on Friday I believe. I will be paying better attention to the pairings from here on out. Especially since it is an important battle. The talent level is very close and since there are only so many spots, I tend to believe the guy with the hot hand may end up with a job. There are also a few opportunities at Cornerback when Champ Bailey takes a “Veteran Day” off here and there.
About 12 minutes before the scheduled start of practice, Tavarres King emerges from the locker room in Full Pads. Alongside him, Receivers coach Tyke Tolbert chats with the rookie and then walks over and I say “Good Morning Coach T!” The JUG’s machine is sitting at the 5 yard line as the players dwindle out on to the practice field by two’s and three’s. I see Secondary Assistant coach Sam Barnes lobbing a tennis ball to some of the Defensive Backs, which they are supposed to track and catch with one hand. Perhaps better hand-eye training will result in more Interceptions this year. In any case, it is good to see such specific training. Meanwhile, Jeremiah Johnson is taking early reps shagging punts launched from the JUG’s machine prior to the start of the practice session. HORN.
Special Teams Punt protection and “Get Off” drills. Trindon Holliday, Wes Welker, Quincy McDuffie join Jeremiah Johnson in taking reps at Punt Returner. C.J. Davis and Andre Caldwell (Hamstring) are back at practice today after getting nicked yesterday. HORN.
11 on 11’s at walk through speed begin. Ryan Clady starts practice at Left Tackle. He ends up taking first team reps and then Chris Clark takes over for the most part. Sylvester Williams is paired up with Kevin Vickerson at Defensive Tackle and the Safety tandem is Rahim Moore and David Bruton. The next Safety rotation is Duke Ihenacho and Quinton Carter, all with the first team. Wide Receiver coach Tyke Tolbert comes over to the crowd and asks us to sing Happy Birthday to coach Clancy Barone on his signal during the team stretch. HORN.
More 11 on 11’s. Ronnie Hillman gets a carry and then Peyton Manning completes a pass to Eric Decker. Another handoff to Hillman, who turns the corner around the left side and gets a good 5 yards. Ronnie’s next carry results in a 7-8 yard gain. Manning hits Demaryius Thomas on a sideline comeback route as the Offense moves downfield (as opposed to keeping the same Line of Scrimmage play after play). Once they reach the 30 yard line, they switch sides and the “2’s” get their opportunity to go to work. Brock Osweiler’s first pass, intended for Tavarres King is broken up by Mario Butler, who is having a pretty good Camp so far, in my opinion. Knowshon Moreno gets a pair of 5 yard runs, one to each side. So far, this is a cleaner practice and running smoother. HORN.
It’s time for Position Drills. The Quarterbacks are are during extended work with the Wide Receivers on passing drills and this takes up most of the segment. HORN.
Players separate into two groups, with half moving to my left to work on the Running game and the Wide Receiver/Cornerback 1 on 1’s to my right. The first play is a deep pass intended for Tavarres King down to the one yard line, but Champ Bailey schools yet another rookie and knock the ball away at the last moment. Champ trots back to where the CB’s are gathered with a grin on his face. Next up, I see Quincy McDuffie catch a deep ball past Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who gets turned all the way around. DRC gets a paw on it, but not enough to prevent McDuffie from making the catch. Tavarres King makes a grab in front of Tony Carter and Wes Welker catches a Touchdown pass over Omar Bolden. Kemonte’ Bateman grabs pass over Aaron Hester for another TD and then Tony Carter and Kayvon Webster get Interceptions on back to back plays. HORN.
7 on 7’s are next on the agenda and Peyton hits Demaryius Thomas. The Referees, play clock and Chains are being utilized now. Manning hits Joel Dreessen down the seam and then Eric Decker makes a catch in a good battle with Champ Bailey. Manning just misses Demaryius Thomas and then the second unit goes to work with Brock Osweiler connecting with Gerell Robinson on a pair of plays. Zac Dysert hooks up with Lamaar Thomas and then Julius Thomas. After a drop by Jake O’Connell, Dysert tosses a pair of completions to Kemonte’ Bateman. HORN.
Special Teams segment. Punt protection against the “Red Hats”with Britton Colquitt sending punts to Trindon Holliday and Wes Welker. All three units getting work and then do an actual full coverage rep. HORN.
11 on 11’s. Duke Ihenacho and Rahim Moore are in at Safety. Peyton’s first attempt is dropped by Julius Thomas and then Manny Ramirez has a bad snap. Hillman takes it over the right side for 4 yards. Then Montee Ball gains three yards on his first carry and 5 more on a second rep. Brock Osweiler comes in and hits Virgil Green on a nice play. After Knowshon Moreno cuts back for 7 yards, I see Sylvester Williams on the ground. He is able to get up and limp off the field under his own power, so it shouldn’t be too serious. Meanwhile, play continues with Brock completing passes to Greg Orton and Quincy McDuffie. Zac Dysert completes to Julius Thomas and then a dump off to Lance Ball goes nowhere. HORN.
11 on 11’s continue down in the Red Zone from the 20 yard line. Knowshon gets a 5 yard gain on the first play and then Manning tries to hit Demaryius Thomas in the back of the End Zone but Rahim Moore breaks up the play. Osweiler’s first attempt is batted down by a leaping Omar Bolden. The next pass is behind Gerell Robinson, but the young Receiver gathers it in for a Touchdown. Brock throws a pass for Kemonte’ Bateman and it is broken up. Greg Orton makes a terrific catch for a Touchdown from Osweiler and then decides to celebrate it with a dunk over the crossbar. Gerell Robinson drops another pass and then the third team rotates in. C. J. Anderson runs for 2 yards, then Quentin Jammer breaks up a Dysert pass. Zac then overthrows Quincy McDuffie. Note: Philip Blake is at Center for the 3rd team. HORN.
Changing directions, the 1st team steps up and Manning hits Decker despite blatant Pass Interference by Tony Carter. Then, under pressure, Peyton hits Wes Welker with Chris Harris all over him. Manning passes complete to Julius and Demaryius Thomas on back to back plays. Osweiler throws a high incomplete intended for Greg Orton and then it’s Hillman off Left Tackle for 5 yards. Osweiler, working on his hard count, is able to get Malik Jackson and Mitch Unrein to jump offsides. After moving up the five yards, Jeremy Beal and Quentin Jammer are there for the Sack on Brock. The next pass goes deep for Gerell Robinson, who bobbles and drops the ball, which brings a derisive comment from his position coach. Zac Dysert completes a pass to Jake O’Connell and then dumps a pass off too late for Jeremiah Johnson because Lanston Tanyi was already there for the Sack. Zac sends another towards O’Connell, but the pass is broken up by Aaron Hester. Kayvon Webster and Lanston Tanyi are there to Sack Dysert again. HORN.
After a 2 minute water break, the Special Teams Punt protection unit has another go of it against the Red Hats. The ball is on the far 35 and Britton Colquitt is booting punts 55-65 yards from the line of scrimmage. Trindon Holliday, Wes Welker, Quincy McDuffie and Jeremiah Johnson take turns fielding punts. Besides David Bruton, who normally makes the protection calls, Duke Ihenacho is taking reps in that capacity. This drill goes on for 3 reps for each unit and then Coach Jeff Rodgers has them move down into the last 20 yards of coverage in to the return man. They drill on maintaining lane responsibilities and communicating the direction of the return. HORN.
Time enough for one last 11 on 11 segment. Montee Ball gains 3 yards on his first carry and then manages 2 yards after slipping an arm tackle in the backfield and diving between Kevin Vickerson and Wesley Woodyard. Vickerson bats down Manning’s pass attempt and then Brock Osweiler enters and hands off to Knowshon Moreno in a third down and 1 situation drill. Moreno converts and then Lance Ball converts his try.Knowshon gets stuffed on the next attempt but the Defense is offsides. Then C.J. Anderson breaks a tackle by Damien Holmes, races around the left side and takes it to the house. The other Running Backs charge downfield to celebrate with their fellow rusher and there’s the final HORN.
I get a well earned day off tomorrow, so the Kaptain’s Log will continue Wednesday afternoon. Until then…
– Kaptain Kirk