• One of my new favorite players here is FB/TE/H-back Kyle Juszczyk form Harvard, or as some people call him, “Juice.” He doesn’t stab anyone or kidnap people for their sports paraphernalia, but he does lead the Senior Bowl practices in lowering his shoulders and trying to punish defenders. He runs hard, has good hands, was the best back yesterday in pass pro, and has deceptive speed. Interesting jack of all trades kind of player.
• The other player that is clearly naturally gifted is Texas WR Marquise Goodwin. He’s probably the fastest player here, and showed it when blew right past Nevada’s Duke Williams on a go route. In drills, all the receivers were running 10 yard outs. The QB was in a rhythm throwing to normal-speed receivers, but when it was Goodwin’s turn, the ball was got there way late because Goodwin was getting to spot so much faster. Goodwin doesn’t just seem like a speed-only guy though. He also has some polish. His route-running looks good, and he made a gorgeous diving catch today on a quick out with a defender all over him. Showed good hands. Impressive kid.
• Another receiver that I don’t believe I’ve spoken about so far is Markus Wheaton. Wheaton beat Jamar Taylor deep today, and later smoked Desmond Trufant on an outstanding out route. He also adjusted to a throw on a post route that was thrown behind him, and made the catch in traffic. Good player.
• Two drops for Denard Robinson while running the route tree (no defenders on the field). That’s not good. Syracuse WR Alex Lemon also had a rough day. He ran a bad route on an out and up (he didn’t really sell the out at all), and had a bad drop.
• The Raiders WR coach made a comment I found funny. A ball sailed way over the head of a receiver today, and the WR coach said “Put your hands up to try to catch it anyway. You never know what can happen.” What, like the ball experiencing turbulence and suddenly dropping 5 feet?
• For most of the day Central Michigan OT Eric Fisher owned Alex Okafor and Margus Hunt. That was also true in yesterday’s practice. However, there was one play in which Okafor made a great little inside rip move on Fisher and sacked the QB. That’s sort of the weird thing about the DE position. You can be dominated all day, but if you make that one huge play (sack/fumble), you can be a hero. The same can be said of the OT position, except that you can be great for 99% of your snaps, have one bad one, and look like the goat. The Eagles spoke with Okafor after practice.
• I thought Phillip Thomas had a nice day. There was one play where Kansas St WR Chris Harper tried to go deep on Thomas, but Thomas stayed in his hip pocket the entire way. Harper pushed off and made the catch but it was clearly OPI. That’s a safety covering a receiver one-on-one. Well done. The Skins talked to Thomas after practice.
• Syracuse OL Justin Pugh was playing a little bit of guard, and I think I saw him playing some tackle, but I’m not sure on that one. On one rep where he was in at LG, he pulled to the left to the outside and laid out UConn CB Blidi Wrey-Wilson. Pugh outweighs Wrey-Wilson by 100+ pounds, but it’s still good to see an offensive lineman take advantage of an opportunity to level a CB. The Giants talked to Pugh after practice.
• NC State QB Mike Glennon continues to show that he has the best deep ball here, and it’s not even close. He threw an absolute strike to Aaron Mellette down the sideline, 40 yards down the field. Perfect throw. He has been the best QB here, in my opinion, however, the book on Glennon is that he struggled when he starts to get some pressure, which is not an issue here.
• Here’s who the NFC East teams talked to after practice:
- Justin Pugh, OL, Syracuse
- Phillip Thomas, S, Fresno St.
- Nick Kasa, TE, Colorado (I’m late on this one, but I was told by another media guy that the Skins talked to him yesterday)
- Alex Okafor, DE, Texas
- Dwayne Gratz, CB, UConn
- Michael Buchanan, DE, Illinois