Jags hit field in shells

August 5, 2011 · By · Filed Under Football 

Myles Gibbon scrambling during practice in 2010.

Friday mornings practice saw the team dress out in shells for the first time this preseason. It also saw an elevation in intensity, however the coaches made sure the kids stopped short of full contact.

As has become accustomed for the Jags, they started practice with specials teams work with the kicking game. This was followed by individual and group workouts. They did some double team work on offensive linemen, tight ends and receivers for the quarterbacks.

The offense then came together and worked against the defense with the inside and outside running game and also running the play-action pass.

After the team took a break from the heat, the offense and defense worked against each other with particular emphasis on packages and scenarios for about 30 minutes. Later in the team drill, the offense worked on picking up the blitz.

Rounding out the practice was the quarterbacks working on ball security and special teams working on punt coverage. Special teams is where many young players will be focusing in order to make trips on the road. Once they secure a position on special teams, then they can work into the playing rotation.

Coach Jones noticed the increased intensity and the early improvement the Jags have shown. “When you put the pads on for the first day, it’s always that way,” head coach Joey Jones said. “We have a bunch of competitive young men. They love the game and love to be physical. My job a lot of the time is pulling them back, which is good. You don’t want to have to push them forward; you want to pull them back. That’s the kind of kids we have. If we can learn to practice every day and practice with that great effort, we can be a really good football team. I like our attitude.”

Coach Jones continued talking about the team by saying, “I’ve noticed that defensively we’re getting off of blocks and running to the football very well. Offensively, we’re picking up blitzes better. The last couple of years, it seemed like every time we ran blitz period we were just getting killed on offense. Our offensive line is doing a much better job of picking that up so far. But we’re improved on both sides of the ball right now.”

Coach Jones singled out a few new additions to the program when he spoke after practice. “B.J. [Scott] looked really good out there. He has a knack for getting to the football. He has a great feel for the game. And I thought Demetre Baker looked good running the ball today. He looked a little better to me today than he did in the spring. He’s a powerful back and his vision is getting better.”

Al.com’s Tommy Hicks had a write-up about Demetre Baker, the Georgia transfer, who is moving back to running back after converting to linebacker for the Bulldogs. You can read his article here.

Preseason camp will continue Saturday morning with another 6:15am practice.

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