Today was my first day this season to get out to Baptist Sports Park and watch training camp. I was really impressed by the new parking setup right across the street from the facility (no shuttles!). I plan to be at pretty much all of the rest of the practices, and would definitely encourage others to catch a few if you can.
My thoughts after the jump.
- Jared Cook is the biggest wide receiver you will ever see. I know many people may think that is a typo, and the roster backs that up, but I never saw him line up once with his hand on the ground. Jared looked good, for the most part, operating out of the slot. He DID drop a catch in the endzone during the hurry up drill however, but he made several other nice catches and has little to no problem getting separation on defenders in the secondary.
- We have some serious motor at defensive end. Jevon Kearse and Kyle Vanden Bosch were flying around the field on every drill, often chasing after running backs 20 yards down field. Kearse looked like he's shed a couple years during the offseason. He was mighty fast rushing off the edge and gave David Stewart trouble a couple of times. At defensive tackle, Tony Brown and Jason Jones both looked good. Both of those guys got really good push up the middle and both batted a pass down at the line.
- Wide receiver is still the biggest question mark as far as who is making the team. Chris Davis looked like a guy determined to make the roster, making a couple of nice catches and taking all the reps catching punts. Lavelle Hawkins, on the other hand, continued to look like a guy who is just happy to be there, causing Coach Heimerdinger to chew him out at one point for a pre-snap miscue. Rookies Dominique Edison and Dudley Guice both looked good, and if Hawkins can't be bothered to get his head in the game, I'm all for letting one of those guys take his spot.
- None of the quarterbacks did anything to write home about. Kerry only threw it down the field a couple of times, and one of those was terribly under-thrown and only avoided being picked off because two defenders collided going up for the pick. Vince Young made some good throws and some bad throws, but that's pretty much what you would expect out of a guy who has struggled since he arrived in Tennessee with consistency. Patrick Ramsey looked good directing a hurry up drill, and would have scored if Cook had held onto the ball. Alex Mortensen had trouble handling snaps, fumbling twice during a running drill.
- On special teams, Rob Bironas was back on the field after sitting out the first few days with some issues regarding a leg strain. He looked like his old self, though they didn't push him to kick anything too long. A.J. Trapasso took all of the punting reps, and he looked fantastic, dropping 3 punts inside the 2 yard line and keeping them out of the endzone.
- It's pretty tough to tell anything about running backs until they put full pads on, but Javon Ringer looks good. He runs low to the ground and has incredibly smooth strides. He almost floats along. Chris Henry still can't see where he is going, and ran into the pile a couple of different times. If he is on the 53 man roster I will be shocked and Coach Fisher will have some serious 'splaining to do.
- Remember the name Larry Birdine. This is his second stint in training camp in Tennessee, and he was an absolute handful at defensive end. We may not have room for him in our crowded d-line stable, but if he can't make the final 53, another team would be wise to give him a shot.