I thought I would check in on the 1st Quarter opponents. The Buffalo Bills, Detroit Lions, San Diego Chargers, and the Minnesota Vikings are all preparing to face our Kansas City Chiefs in the coming weeks.
Buffalo Bills - August 4th
Oh Crap Moment
That is, until the Bills' prized possession of the off-season, third overall pick Marcell Dareus, fell down and immediately grabbed at his lower leg.
To his credit, Dareus stayed in one more snap after the injury, then walked with a slight limp over the the area the rest of to players were resting. It took a solid five minutes, and then the Bills training staff came over to attend to him. They made him walk a bit, and the team's worst fears were avoided.
- C.J. Spiller had a terrific practice. He was showing burst to the line of scrimmage, identifying the correct hole and hitting it at the right moment. He was even lowering his pad level at would be tacklers to try and get more yardage.
- The 1-on-1's for offensive and defensive linemen continue to be my favorite thing to watch during a football practice. Spencer Johnson looked powerful throughout, getting past Andy Levitre on one and blowing past Chad Rinehart on another.
- Rinehart got in a bit of an altercation, the first of training camp. He and defensive lineman T.J. Langley got into it after Langley went high and knocked off the guard's helmet. Rinehart took exception to it, and they scuffled down to the turf. It's actually kind of funny, both men wear the number 76. Number envy, perhaps.
- Kraig Urbik continues to struggle a bit. He gives up a ton of ground against starters in the 1-on-1 drills.
- Here's the obligatory Aaron Maybin bullet. Maybin went up against Erik Pears and Demetrius Bell one separate reps. The winner? I'll give you a hint, their nickname isn't Mayhem. However, Maybin did have a nice play, speeding by Ed Wang to force an incompletion during team drills.
- Stevie Johnson had a tremendous day, coming down with a few great catches that drew applause from the onlooking fans. He put his body on the line for a couple of them.
- Brad Smith started off the session working exclusively with the quarterback group. He spent time after practice throwing the football around forty or fifty yards with Thigpen. http://wgr550.com/pages/9034669.php?pid=57611
Detroit Lions - August 6
Oh Crap moment
The Detroit Lions did not outline a specific timetable for when they expect Nick Fairley to return from foot surgery. They did say that Fairley is "expected to miss a significant portion of training camp," making it sound like he will miss most but potentially not all of camp. At the very least, it indicates he should be ready for the regular season, as does this tweet from John Clayton:
- The Detroit Lions continued training camp on Saturday morning with their eighth practice.
- The following players missed all of today's practice: RB Maurice Morris, WR Titus Young, LT Jeff Backus, RT Gosder Cherilus, DT Andre Fluellen, DT Nick Fairley, CB Alphonso Smith and S Louis Delmas.
- Jason Fox, who had been filling in at left tackle for the injured Backus, suffered an injury of his own this morning, leaving practice after going down in a drill. He was seen with a walking boot and crutches after practice, according to Dave Birkett. Chris McCosky reports that Fox has a mid-foot injury.
- With Backus, Cherilus and now Fox out with injuries, the Lions are down to Tony Ugoh, Corey Hilliard, Johnny Culbreath and Isaac Sowells, who just signed a couple days ago, at offensive tackle.
- Stephen Tulloch practiced at middle linebacker for the Lions for the first time since joining the team. DeAndre Levy was at ROLB and Justin Durant remained at LOLB.
- Cornerbacks Eric Wright and Maurice Leggett had to leave practice with dehydration issues.
- Titus Young, who has missed the last week of practice, expects to return next week. http://www.prideofdetroit.com/2011/8/6/2348431/detroit-lions-training-camp-injuries
San Diego Chargers - August 6
"There were going to be some long days, but I knew we'd ultimately get the job done," he said. "We have great people in this organization, which gave me confidence going into it. I may have been a jerk to my family in the days leading up to it because I knew it was going to be 15-16-hour days and we were going to have to go all-in, but once everything started you had to just go. It was more of a mental grind than a physical one, but we all got through it."
McGuire waded into uncharted waters and came back with quite a haul. He signed 16 veteran free agents ---- plus Vincent Jackson's franchise tag ---- and eight draft picks. He brought in imports, including Takeo Spikes, Bob Sanders and Travis LaBoy, and retained several key players from last season's squad. The relatively cheap signing of receiver Maclom Floyd punctuated a roster construction that, while never truly over, was carried out close to plan.
Minnesota Vikings - August 7
In the span of about six weeks, Frazier will oversee the installation of a new offense. He'll preside over the transition to quarterback Donovan McNabb, develop a new left tackle and do his best to instill a tone of professional confidence that reflects his own personality.
Three days at Minnesota State University, Mankato, revealed the Vikings are well on their way to adopting Frazier's style. Players and staff worked hard but with an emotional ease that belied the tense tenure of former coach Brad Childress. It's been a while since I've seen smiles during a full-contact Vikings practice, and I was amazed at how downright happy people were -- from the elite players on the roster to the lowest-level staffers. Even left guard Steve Hutchinson, whose next career is certain to include a role as Oscar the Grouch, chatted gregariously with reporters after last Wednesday's practice.
As a football team, the Vikings have a long way to go in terms of chemistry and scheme. But I can tell you this: No one seemed worried.
A lot of disarray in our 1st Quarter opponents and bodes well for the Chiefs getting a jump out of the gates on the 2011 season.