Josh Drayden had a tougher walk back to the facility after practice on Tuesday morning than he had the previous five days. The rookie, who was being a good sport about his first-year duties, was carrying multiple sets of pads on his shoulders. The first day of pads delivered entertainment in a few different forms for the Commanders.
"It was fun. I mean I was talking all morning," Cole Holcomb said. "That's when the real football starts so I was super excited. I was maybe a little too excited jumping the gun out there, lunging a little bit but it felt good to get them back on."
For linebackers like Holcomb, playing with full pads comes with more physicality and, in turn, increased importance on being physical in the right ways.
"The lineman can grab a little more…there's definitely more contact," Holcomb said. "So, it's like you got to be on your P's and Q's with your fits. You've got to be a little more violent using your hands."
Linebackers certainly aren't the only position group affected by the addition of pads. The feel and pace of practice as a whole becomes more game-like – a shift that comes with both positives and potential negatives.
"Probably the biggest thing obviously is the intensity gets ramped up," head coach Ron Rivera said. "We just want to make sure that as we ramp this intensity up, we are doing things the right way. We don't wanna lose our focus and our intent in terms of developing, learning and growing, just because we got the pads on."
With the fun, intensity and excitement it brings, the first day of pads offers important pieces of information that will be critical to review and build off of as the training camp journey continues.
"Lots of good things on tape that we're looking forward to watching as a coaching staff," Rivera said.
Here's a morning roundup of what the local and national media have to say about the Washington Commanders on Wednesday, August 3, 2022. All reports, rumors and conjecture are a reflection of the media conversation and are not endorsed or confirmed by the Washington Commanders.
The reports and deals expressed in this article have not been confirmed by Washington, nor do they reflect any insider information from anyone in the front office.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey writes about Taylor Heinicke's love of LEGOS.
- The Washington Post's PJ Morales writes about the hunt for the team's next starting dual-returner.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux writes about Antonio Gibson's confidence entering Year 3.
- NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay provides a look back at Ryan Kerrigan's career in Washington.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier writes about the sounds of the first few days of training camp.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux writes about Dyami Brown's epic in Day 3.
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala writes about the positive Day 2 outing for the Commanders' secondary.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey also writes about the glimpses of Curtis Samuel magic that offer hope for the future.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey also writes about how Carson Wentz's attitude has impressed as training camp gets underway.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux writes about the humble approach that is fueling the Commanders defense.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux also talks about Jahan Dotson's excitement towards learning from Terry McLaurin.
- ESPN's John Keim writes about Carson Wentz building his confidence on the first day of camp.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier gives five position battles to watch ahead of training camp.
- The Washington Time's Matthew Paras looks at his top position battles to watch.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey talks about Antonio Gibson wanting to be known exclusively as a running back.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey also writes about why Terry McLaurin was so excited to be throwing with Carson Wentz.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey writes about how Curtis Samuel feels about the 2021 season.
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala writes about Ron Rivera's confidence in the Commanders' growth ahead of training camp.
Check Out What's On Commanders.com:
- Antonio Gibson looking 'spry' in return to team drills
- Training Camp Notebook | Defense shines to start Week 2 of camp
- 4 standouts from Week 1 of Commanders' training camp
- Kam Curl gives inside look at intense defensive competition
- Kerrigan: Love from Washington fanbase 'made my career'
- Ryan Kerrigan pens letter to announce retirement
- Ryan Kerrigan announces retirement, will sign one day contract with the Commanders
- Training Camp Notebook | Defense shines on Day 2
- Media Round Up | Ron Rivera sees Brian Robinson as 'big, strong, powerful downhill runner'
- Carson Wentz focused on building chemistry to start camp
- Quick hits from Ron Rivera's introductory training camp press conference
- Hail Mail | Training camp is finally upon us
- Commanders players begin reporting for training camp
- Commanders place Chase Young, Logan Thomas, Tyler Larsen, Chase Roullier on PUP list; Cornelius Lucas placed on NFI list
- Washington Commanders announce open voting for fans to help select Fight Song lyrics and team mascot as part of the team's inaugural season under a new name and brand identity
- Full list of Commanders Madden 23 ratings revealed