Training Camp Notes 7-29: Michael Thomas & Much More
Here are some Fantasy Training Camp Notes from Sunday 7-29. Enjoy!
Case Keenum has fantastic pass placement. Even on the run. Putting the ball where only his guy can catch it. This is more than accuracy. Its field awareness and understanding how to help run after the catch. #Broncos @1043TheFan
Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders and River Cracraft have made some fine, fine catches today. #9sports
Case Keenum and Demaryius Thomas putting on a show for fans. Keenum just threw a perfect over-the-shoulder pass to him and followed with a TD pass to Emmanuel Sanders.
DenverBroncos.com – Andrew Mason
RB Royce Freeman had a slew of solid runs as he continued to demonstrate the good vision and decisive cuts to the hole that jumped out from his work during OTAs and minicamp.
The third-round pick had multiple runs that would have been double-digit gains in game situations, including a 10-yard run to the right with after taking a handoff from Case Keenum during a team period. Freeman capped the day with a solid sprint to the right which could have been at least a 12-yard gain in a game situation.
Third-year veteran Devontae Booker had a solid gain from midfield during one of the team periods, bursting through a hole on the left side of the line before turning upfield for a long pickup.
Second-year back De'Angelo Henderson had some good carries, including one that saw him take a handoff from Chad Kelly and follow blocks from wide receiver Jordan Leslie and offensive tackle Jeremiah Poutasi for a potential 20-yard gain in game conditions.
One day after making a gorgeous over-the-shoulder catch on a deep pass from Paxton Lynch, rookie wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton topped himself by making a one-handed grab of a Keenum pass down the left sideline to open the first seven-on-seven period.
New England Patriots
Jordan Matthews departed with a right hamstring injury that he suffered in 1-on-1s. Went into the tent for a couple minutes, emerged to change cleats, tried to jog once then left for the locker room.
Jeff Howe @jeffphowe
Sony Michael looked much better today than yesterday. Took a screen a long way, did a nice job cutting through two levels on a run. And most importantly, he held onto the ball.
New Orleans Saints
Luke Johnson @ByLukeJohnson
WR Tre’Quan Smith just made another balletic catch. Wow moment of the day. @Amos_MoraleIII got video.
Saints Wire – John Sigler
The first week of New Orleans Saints training camp is wrapping up, and nobody has created day-to-day buzz like rookie wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith. The former UCF National Champion has been dominant in one-on-one contests and team drills, winning his battles on a variety of vertical routes. He’s looking the part of a real playmaker as the fourth wideout behind Michael Thomas, Ted Ginn Jr, and Cameron Meredith.
NewOrleansSaints.com – Sean Kelley
Wide receiver Michael Thomas may as well just shut it down until Labor Day. The Saints leading receiver from a year ago put on a clinic this weekend. He looks ready for the season and more as he is giving the defensive secondary fits. Sunday, again, he had cornerback Marshon Lattimore shaking his head. The 1,245 yards receiving last season seems like an easy target again.
James Palmer @JamesPalmerTV
Carson Wentz didn’t participate in 11-11 periods today. He did yesterday. It was the #eagles 2nd consecutive day in pads. The plan for Wentz is put together on a weekly basis. Pederson agreed today when asked if you didn’t know Wentz was hurt you wouldn’t notice watching him.
Come play with me @DezBryant let’s get the chip..........Eat Greedy......Big plates.......
Dave Birkett @davebirkett
Matt Patricia on the knee injury Marvin Jones suffered Saturday: "He's good, he's fine." Patricia indicated Lions will be cautious with Jones. No reason to rush him back in July.
Marvin Jones is back in uniform for the #Lions today, went they the pre-practice walk-thru. We’ll see what he does once hitting starts.
LeGarrette Blount – mlive.com – Kyle Meinke
The Detroit Lions' revamped running game took a hit Sunday when LeGarrette Blount left practice early with an undisclosed injury.
It's unclear what exactly happened, but Blount headed for the locker room shortly after Detroit went through a couple rounds of Oklahoma drills. He was walking under his own power, though escorted by a trainer.
I continue to hear so much love from inside the organization about the Colts' tight ends. That's going to be a very key group for this team. Frank Reich even used a three-tight end lineup in practice the other day. He's all about that position.
WR Deon Cain showing up in the red zone again. Leaping catch from Jacoby Brissett. Another strike from QB2. #Colts
Marlon Mack is running tougher today than at any point I’ve seen. Pretty stout in this red zone period. He’s growing.
Jordy Nelson – EasyBayTimes.com – Matt Schneidman
Jordy Nelson turned 33 two months ago. He’s coming off an underwhelming season after which his longtime team cut him loose. You would think the Raiders are getting a serviceable receiver toward the end of his career, one with a tank not quite on empty but inching closer to it.
But don’t tell anybody with the Raiders that. If you do, they’ll refute it. Heavily. “The thing that you hear about that he can’t run anymore,” quarterback Derek Carr said, “that’s false.”
“I can tell you, he’s one of the fastest skill guys that we have still. He can run. You see that by his route running. If he can win on underneath routes, that means DBs are scared about what he can do over the top. He’s still Jordy Nelson, that’s for sure.”
Miami Dolphins – Sun Sentinel – Chris Perkins
WR Danny Amendola had two TDs in a red zone drill and has been steadily developing as a trusted target.
S Reshad Jones had an INT and a forced fumble, the latter coming vs. RB Frank Gore near the goal line.
TE Mike Gesicki probably ran more snaps with the first team than in any other practice. The kid seems to be making progress. He had TD receptions from Tannehill and QB Bryce Petty.
MiamiDolphins.com – Andy Cohen
I’ve already written down Frank Gore’s name at least five times, marveling over his moves in the open field and amazed when he seems to be going full speed, there always seems to be another gear. “Ageless,” is how Coach Adam Gase described the 35-year-old Gore. My thoughts on Gore haven’t changed. He will have a large role in this offense.
Wide receiver Jakeem Grant brought the crowd to its feet with a diving touchdown catch; Albert Wilson pulls in a deep pass down the middle between two defenders; rookie tight end Mike Gesicki makes a hard-to-believe one-handed touchdown catch in Sunday’s practice.
I keep reminding myself day after day not to get too excited about DeVante Parker, that we’ve travelled this road before and that it’s imperative that we see him consistently produce on Sundays before making any bold declarations. Having said that, we saw him take a bubble screen on the second day of practice and explode through the defense, those long strides eating up yards with such ease. Early thought: He sure looks like in the best condition of his career.
Tight end Mike Gesicki received his most extensive first-team work as a Dolphin on Sunday and the results were what you might expect from the second-round rookie: very good work as a receiver and clearly room for improvement as a blocker.
“I’m very pleased where he’s at with his blocking,” tight ends coach Shane Day said Sunday. “He’s right on track. He’s really improved this spring. He’s right where I would expect him to be as a rookie.”
Buffalo Bill's QBs – wkbw.com – Joe Buscaglia
Fans in attendance on Saturday saw to the sincerest form of Josh Allen -- at least the one that he portrayed during his college days. Early on during individual drills, he misfired a few rockets to his receivers that made them work a bit harder than they needed to.
However, once it got to team drills, Allen started to shine. His first throw was an on-point slant route in tight coverage that the defensive back barely got a hand on to break it up. Then he read the next play correctly -- a pick play that freed up wideout Kaelin Clay on a wheel route -- and Allen put the perfect touch on the throw to hit Clay in stride, and he quickly ran into the end zone for a touchdown.
The very next play, he made a fantastic anticipatory throw to Cam Phillips on a comeback route to the left sideline that was there as soon as the wideout turned. Allen was feeling himself, which is what led to the next part of the Josh Allen Experience. The next play, Allen spotted his target in the end zone on an out route, stared him down -- to which cornerback Ryan Carter baited him and quickly jumped in front for the interception.
It's a bit frustrating with A.J. McCarron. Every once and again he'll see his first read and make a great throw down the field that makes you want to see more, but the remainder of the time shows a version of McCarron that is playing not to lose the job.
The trouble is, that mentality might also cause him to lose the starting competition. So far in camp, McCarron hasn't taken a lot of chances. He's held on to the ball long and more often than not settles for a short throw. On Saturday we found the height of that style of play from McCarron who completed 5-of-6 pass attempts in practice. The trouble is, he completed all five passes behind or just a few yards in front of the line of scrimmage, which makes his completion percentage look a lot less impressive.
Training camp is three days old which is enough of a sample size to conclude that Nathan Peterman has not looked like the same player that he was during spring practices. Peterman showed confidence in his arm, touch on his throws, and a deep understanding of the playbook during the spring.
In his first three days, Peterman has panicked in the pocket a bit and looks a little nervous to my eye. As a result, his accuracy has suffered, completing only 6-of-14 pass attempts over the last two days.
San Francisco 49ers
We have our first big play of the Jimmy Garoppolo-to-Pierre Garçon connection: A deep ball down the left sideline during 1-on-1s. #49ersCamp
Quick #49ersCamp Day 4 notes: -Most competitive/entertaining practice of camp. -Garoppolo’s deep ball on point today. Finished 9 of 14. -Garçon finally making an impact. -Sherman struggled 1-on-1 but solid during team. -Attaochu coming on strong with a pair of sacks. #49ers
Peter Panacy @PeterPanacy
It's really looking as if WR Dante Pettis just needed a couple of days to learn the ropes in #49ersCamp. Once the pads came on, he's been able to flash his excellent route-running abilities and has made a serious impact. Stock is rising. #49ers #49wz
Dante Pettis is starting to stack good practices together. He was impressive again today, both in 1-on-1s and 11-on-11s. Super smooth in and out of his breaks. #49ersCamp
#49ersCamp Notes - Day 4: Jimmy Garoppolo’s best day of camp. Completed 9 of 14 (64%) with two deep completions - one to Marquise Goodwin and another to Jerick McKinnon, both well-placed. #49ers
New England Patriots – boston.com
Tom Brady hit tight end Will Tye on a nice touchdown pass with Patrick Chung in coverage. Chung gave Tye props after the play with double tap on the helmet.
Brian Hoyer fired a beautiful deep ball that Julian Edelman caught without breaking stride. It drew the biggest non-Brady roar of the day. The two hooked up again later with rookie JC Jackson burned in coverage.
Sony Michel excited the crowd by flashing his acceleration with a nice right end sweep that he took to the house from about 50 yards out. Props to Deatrich Wise Jr., who had no chance to catch but chugged most of the way in pursuit nevertheless.
Cordarrelle Patterson continues to make his presence felt in the offense. He had a couple of nice catches, his best coming when he caught a contested Brady pass with Eric Rowe in tight coverage. It was a double catch (it bounced off his chest, which is not ideal) but it showed good concentration as he tapped his feet inbounds. Patterson was working on catching punts post practice.
Paul Richardson – ESPN – John Keim
The Redskins big free agent signing, receiver Paul Richardson, made some plays Sunday morning. On Saturday, Richardson was open deep but QB Alex Smith's pass was underthrown. Sunday, the two connected in the back of the end zone as Richardson caught a ball in traffic. He also caught another ball on a crossing route.
Cowboys’ TEs – bloggingtheboys.com – Danny Phantom
Prior to training camp, the whole dilemma for TE Rico Gathers is how far behind he is when it comes to the blocking aspect of the tight end position. But for Rico, his deficiencies are not limited to just blocking as he’s struggled with all the intricacies of the position. Blocking, route-running, getting his body turned in the right position when he catches the ball - these are all things that he’s having problems with.
Blake Jarwin is quick off the line, has great body control in and out of cuts and catches the ball with authority. I was happy to observe that Dalton Schultz catches the ball easily and naturally; in a two-minute drill against air, he ran a corner route that required him to catch the ball over his left shoulder, and he made it look easy.
The less good news on this front is that Rico Gathers was by far the worst of the bunch.
Regarding Rico...He lacks explosion and dropped a couple of balls that hit him right in the hands. Most condemning, to my mind, was Gathers’ lack of body control; he struggled to stay above his feet when cutting and therefore had difficulty getting out of his breaks.
Cowboys – DallasCowboys.com – Bryan Broaddus
Just tremendous ball reactions by Byron Jones on his interception of Dak Prescott. WR Deonte Thompson had a little trouble getting off the line from Jones, but further up the field he was able to separate a bit. Prescott tried to the throw the ball out front of Thompson but he was a little short. Jones was right underneath Thompson and in perfect position as the ball came down right into his hands.
WR Cole Beasley with a beautiful stutter-step move inside to freeze Awuzie in 1 on 1. These drills heavily favor the WRs but Beasley’s routes have been terrific. #cowboyswire
Rishard Matthews not practicing again today for @Titans
Delanie Walker back on the practice field this morning for @Titans
Titansonline.com – Jim Wyatt
Mariota made some nice throws on the day, starting with a deep ball to receiver Michael Campanaro, who got behind cornerback Logan Ryan. Campanaro, a workhorse early in the offseason before an injury, has been making plays again early in camp. I thought Mariota closed practice well.
Speaking of making plays, receiver Darius Jennings has really stood out to me so far. He’s been a reliable target across the middle, and downfield on deep throws. He made a beautiful diving catch from Mariota on Sunday, and the quarterback came up to him afterward and patted him on the chest. Jennings is being rewarded for his work. He got a lot more first-team reps on Sunday as Corey Davis was held out of action, and he made the most of it.
WR Taywan Taylor showed off his speed when getting behind cornerback LeShaun Sims on a deep ball. Taylor has put in a lot of good work in camp.
Running back Derrick Henry had a lot of success running right up the middle. He took a handoff in team drills and busted into the secondary. Dion Lewis turned in some nice runs himself on Sunday.
During the offseason, I didn’t notice receiver Deontay Burnett a whole bunch in practices. But he’s now standing out in training camp, and he caught a deep ball when he got behind Sims. Later, Mariota found him streaking across the middle of the field.
LeSean McCoy – Chris Ivory – BuffaloBills.com -
The Buffalo offense got its’ usual flashy work from running back LeSean McCoy. And backup RB Chris Ivory hit the holes hard as well. In one of the first 11-on-11 sessions of the day, Ivory found a big crease over the left side and showed surprising speed and quickness as he burst through the hole and picked up 15-20-yards.
#Browns Corey Coleman way more consistent catching the ball today. David Njoku with 3 drops. Rashard Higgins and Baker Mayfield have developed great chemistry. Keep your eye on Higgy.
Cleveland.com – Mary Kay Cabot, Josh Gunter and John Kuntz
On Day 4 of Browns training camp, Baker Mayfield had arguably his best day in camp so far, Corey Coleman redeemed himself from a rocky practice on Saturday, and tight end David Njoku dropped four passes.
Third-year receiver Rashard Higgins displayed his excellent chemistry with Baker Mayfield, with whom he's been working overtime, and sixth-round pick Damion Ratley returned from a hip injury suffered on day one and caught a couple of nice deep balls from Mayfield.
Tyrod Taylor and Jarvis Landry continue to provide plenty of offensive highlights, including a touchdown pass at the left side of the end zone in goal-line drills.
Njoku had an afternoon he'll want to forget. He started dropping balls early in practice and couldn't recover. By the time it was over, he had four drops in all, including one on a short pass over the middle from Taylor in 7-0n-7s. How Njoku responds over the next few days will be crucial.
Brownszone.com – Scott Petrak
Receiver Rashard Higgins made a case to move up the depth chart. He caught several passes, including a short touchdown from Baker Mayfield in a goal-line drill. His best catch came when he snatched the ball out of the air on a deep back-shoulder pass from Mayfield.
If you have any comments or questions feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @Fantasytaz