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Wake Up Washington | John Bates getting 'acclimated back to more reps' after return from injury

WUW081022

Washington Commanders tight end John Bates found himself in unfamiliar territory at the beginning of training camp.

"I've never really been hurt that much in my life," Bates said. "Being away from that is really tough to watch…guys that you're with every day going out and playing."

Dealing with a calf injury, the second-year tight end navigated the flurry of emotions that come with being sidelined. This time of year, when coaches spend hours evaluating every position and considering how the depth chart might shake out, watching practice as an injured player comes with an outside perspective on what the competition in your respective position group looks like. Six tight ends are currently on the active roster for the Commanders, a fact that Bates says is "pushing everyone to get better."

With Bates out, rookie Cole Turner, who has also missed time with injury,was able to get more reps, which allowed his game to develop in a way early on that it might not have had Bates been in the mix.

"The additional reps have helped me out for sure to get a better grasp," Turner said. "The easiest way of learning something is by doing it."

Taking it all in from the side field, Bates appreciated the contributions from the newer guys in the tight end group and what they were doing to keep up the intensity.

"Those young guys have been doing a great job for us going out there and stepping up with a couple guys down," Bates said. "We got a great group of guys and everyone wants everyone to be the best that they can be."

Fast forward less than a week, and Turner and Bates have switched spots in a sense as the rookie picked up an injury that's kept him out of practice recently.

With the first preseason game just a couple sessions out, Bates will be focused on getting back to business and establishing himself as a starter.

"I'm working my way there and I'm excited for what the season has to come," he said.

The Washington Commanders' offense had one of the best performances during Day 12 of training camp. Check out the top images from Tuesday's practice.

Here's a morning roundup of what the local and national media have to say about the Washington Commanders on Wednesday, August 10, 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.

The Washington Commanders were back at The Park to kick off Week 3 of training camp. Check out the top images from Monday's practice. (Photos by Emilee Fails/Washington Commanders)

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