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Practice Notes: 2017 #SkinsCamp, Day 9

kirk-cousins-run-day-9-660-350.jpg's Stephen Czarda and Jake Kring-Schreifels break down the key plays and highlights from Day 9 of the Washington Redskins' 2017 training camp in Richmond, Va.


--It's clear that the grind of training camp is starting to hit the players on the ninth day of practice, as some attested walking off the field. The offensive line in particular looked a little sluggish, both in 1-on-1 drills and during the first portion of team drills. Left tackle Trent Williams sat out of practice with an abdominal bruise and watched in street clothes, which may have had something to do with that, as the run game had trouble starting in the early-going. Midway through practice though, running back Rob Kelley broke out a big run on the right side and burst into the second level. From then on, along with Samaje Perine and Chris Thompson, the rushing attack got progressively better and the momentum started to shift.

--Kelley in particular had some nice runs when he got the blocking, and every time he ran past the linebackers and the play was blown dead, safety Su'a Cravens was there to keep jabbing at the ball and Kelley pushed back with some stiff arms. The interaction continued on various run and screen pass plays, something Kelley seems to be working on a little more. He caught some extra passes on the side field during the special teams sessions, looking to enhance that part of his game.

--Some injury notes. The biggest scare belonged to Josh Doctson, who left practice early to get treatment in the medical tent after 7-on-7 drills with a hamstring injury. We'll have a better picture of his health status on Monday. Maurice Harris remained out of pads and helmet with his lingering knee injury and Jamison Crowder suited up but didn't participate in any team drills again. Jordan Reed also remained in street clothes as he deals with his toe injury.

--Gruden mentioned wide receiver Robert Davis at his press conference today, and said he's been impressed with his play so far not only as a pass catcher but as a run blocker. It was the former mostly on display Sunday, however, helping to fill the void left by Doctson. He caught a touchdown pass gaining inside leverage on Dashuan Phillips in 7-on-7 drills and dunked the football over the goal post, which earned him a flag – you still can't dunk over the goal posts according to a referees rules lecture given to the media before practice. Later, during some two-play drills, Davis caught some passes on third downs that would have kept drives alive as the offense battled through some of AC/DC's "Thunderstruck" on third downs, meant to simulate loud noise.

--During 11-on-11 drills, it once again became the Terrelle Pryor Sr. show. One play stood out in particular. Around the 20-yard line, quarterback Trent Williams scrambled around the pocket and had to move to his left, directing Pryor, who had originally started an inside route, to turn around and fly up the left sideline. He adjusted smoothly and peeled up the sideline grabbing the pass at its high point above cornerbacks Bashaud Breeland and Jonathan Allen.

--To finish out practice, the first and second team got opportunities to drive down the field with 1:40 left on the clock. Cousins and the first team had to settle for a field goal, which Dustin Hopkins made from 45 yards, after a series of quick passes, a quarterback keeper and a 20-yard pass to tight Vernon Davis. Colt McCoy and the second team were more successful. Once again, Robert Davis collected another pass and on a slant route for a first down that kept the drive alive. Faced with a fourth-and-3 around the 25-yard line, McCoy hit James Quick on a slant over the middle that he took to the end zone for the remaining 10 yards. 

(Jake Kring-Schreifels)


--As he continues to grow during his first professional training camp, rookie defensive lineman Jonathan Allen is beginning to show more impact playmaking skills along with quite a bit of power during 1-on-1 pass rush drills. During that session, Allen had one of his best showings of camp, overpowering fellow rookies Kyle Kalis and Chase Roullier while also getting some push against Ronald Patrick. Head coach Jay Gruden said that Allen has already added some muscle to his thick frame this offseason and its showing.

--While the Redskins hope that Allen can develop into a strong run stopper that can also create pocket problems for quarterbacks, Ryan Kerrigan is arguably the most consistent player on Washington's roster year in and year out. Prior to Sunday's practice session, Gruden noted that he thinks the two-time Pro Bowl linebacker is in line for another double-digit sack season. But the head coach also thinks that Kerrigan is an excellent run stopper which "goes unnoticed sometimes by a lot of people." Kerrigan showed his abilities in both facets on the afternoon, having some success getting past right tackle Morgan Moses in 1-on-1s while also teaming with Ryan Anderson for what would have been a nice stop on a running play during 11-on-11s. The Purdue product came across the field to help Anderson in preventing a Robert Kelley run from going very far.

--Speaking of Anderson, the second-round pick worked quite a bit with the first-team defense Sunday as Preston Smith (ankle) remains sidelined. Despite being listed as the No. 3 strongside linebacker on the team's first unofficial depth chart, the Redskins have expectations that Anderson will be yet another explosive pass rusher from the outside linebacker spot. Trent Murphy also worked opposite Kerrigan at times.

--Although the team released an unofficial depth chart on Sunday prior to Thursday's preseason opener against the Baltimore Ravens, the defensive line rotation is far from solidified. For example, on that depth chart Ziggy Hood and Stacy McGee are listed as the starting defensive ends while Phil Taylor is the starting nose tackle. But during the first session of 11-on-11s it was Ioannidis out there first with Hood and Taylor. Again, the team still has a week of training camp practices and four preseason games before any determinations will be made about who makes the active roster.

--Lynden Trail doesn't get mentioned quite as much as some of the outside linebackers on the 90-man roster, but the Norfolk State product created quite a bit of pressure during 11-on-11 drills. During the first period of unit drills, Trail burst through the line to create what would have likely been a sack and later could have had a game-sealing play on quarterback Colt McCoy during a fourth down play on the two-minute drill.

--It is expected that Washington's three primary inside linebackers this season will be returning starters Mason Foster and Will Compton along with Pro Bowler Zach Brown. But Martrell Spaight is still seeking his playing time entering his third season with the Redskins. The Arkansas product made a few plays against the run on Sunday including a tackle for loss on a Jones carry that got the 24-year-old pumped up. 

(Stephen Czarda)

Special Teams:

--Kicker Dustin Hopkins hit four of his five field goal attempts, hitting from 32, 37, 42 and 52 yards but just missing a 39-yard try.

(Stephen Czarda)

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