You can probably deduce from the pictures posted that I spent some time watching Watkins, and I did. After starting camp with some flashes, I think he’s slowing down a bit. I am really rooting for him, but it doesn’t look like he’ll unseat the Killer this year. The reason has to do as much with his greenness as it is the good play of Keith Davis. I like the way Watkins get the ball. He’s the type who catches with his hands and not his body. With his great height and leaping ability, he’s going to be one heckuva FS. I don’t think he’ll win the job out of camp because Keith Davis is having a really good camp. In the drills that I saw of him, he made nice break to the ball, and is capable of making call adjustment in the secondary. Case in point, on one play where he and Henry were suppose to switch (offense lined up a RB on the outside and moved a receiver to the slot), the two switched but the offense still ended up making the play. When the two walked back to the line, the DB coach was questioning them what happened. I heard Henry said “My bad, he called it. He called it” while pointing to Davis. I am just not sure Watkins has the ability to make these kinds of call yet. On a related note, because of his tall/skinny build, Watkins has a high center of gravity, and you can see him struggle whenever the DBs are asked to do drills that involved making sharp cuts. On those drills, you would see him begin to turn, then put his hand on the ground to gain leverage, and then slip a little before making the cut. I can now understand how he can have trouble playing man, but be excellent in zone. This is something we fans would be interested to continue monitoring.
Coleman – never realized the guy is so huge. He’s just big! I didn’t pay much attention to him, but knowing that he’s playing significant amount of snap in the Saints game, I’ll keep my eyes on him. It looks like he might be another guy fighting for his roster spot.
Abram Elam – it wasn’t until the first pre-season game that I heard of him, but he’s going to stick. Not sure if he will win a roster spot, but if not, he’s destined to go on the Practice Squad. This kid plays hard and practices hard. I noticed him in my first practice immediately. He was knocking ball down, making tackles, and on one DB blitzing drill, even beat the blocking back to get to the QB. I have heard that he’s got a troubled past that led him to get kicked out of Notre Dame, but this is a kid I’ll be keeping my eyes on. I am excited about his potential.
Pile – it doesn’t look like he will stick. Just doesn’t seem like he has made many plays. Special team might be the only ticket for him to stay on this team.
Roy Williams – looks slimmer this year than last season. Other than that, he’s just playing like Roy. He and Davis are pretty tight, and both always seem to have fun joking and practicing.
Newman – not much to share with you other than what you’ve come to expect from No.41, so perhaps I’ll share something I saw after the first practice. Newman was running to the fence where the fans stood. As fans got ready to get some autographs, I saw a fan handing Newman some memorabilia. Instead of signing it, Newman turned and began running back to the field, toward Terrell Owens. As it turned out, this fan wanted an autograph from Owens, and was asking Newman to help. Newman answered and did the fan a favor. Newman got the autograph, ran back to the fan, delivered the good, and then began signing autographs for the rest of the fans. I mean, just how many football players would do that? Enuf said.
Henry and Aaron Glen – Nothing to report that you haven’t already read. Henry doesn’t strike me as someone interested in training camp practices, or maybe he was just quiet. Most of the time he was just standing there watching as thing unfolds, but rarely did I see any emotion from him. Glen is Glen.
Reeves had that one bad morning where he was made the ***** of Hurd, the one that led to Parcells screaming at him “Jacques Reeves. That was No. 3!” He did bounce bad later that day and I saw him running in stride, step-by-step, to Owens and defended the pass. He’ll hold down the fourth corner spot behind Newman, Henry and Glen.
Nathan Jones – not really sure about him. I just didn’t pay much attention to him, didn’t see him make many plays, nor saw him give up any. I just don’t know. Same for Quincy Butler.
Lenny Williams – the guy just can’t catch a ball to save his life. If anyone should stick around after practices to catch the ball, he’s the one, but I didn’t see that. I don’t think he’ll be on the roster for long.
Ok.. that's it folks!
PS, the pictures were posted here.