Spring Practice #2 Observations

by | Mar 25, 2018 | News

As I am writing this around 1 AM Sunday morning, I was lucky enough to attend the second spring practice this past Friday. Luckily I was able to stay the whole time, to make plenty of observations of what the new regime had going. As you all know it is a different vibe in the air with the new coaching staff, which is great, but that did not catch my attention much. There were some other things that were catching my attention that I loved. (Photo Credit Warchant.com)


What had most people excited about the hire of Willie Taggart was the ability to let our athletes be athletes on offense. What had me impressed was on the second day of spring practice was how prepared the staff was to execute tempo. My amateur video above shows a series from the first team offense, I know the video is cut up, but the tempo was there. The offense was able to get a snap off every 11-14 seconds after each play ended.

The coaches that were sending signals had them going right when a play ended. The offensive coaches had head sets on executing their side of the tempo, and it was pleasing to see the organization. Even though practices have plays pre-scripted, Coach Taggart will be a couple plays ahead within the drive this season. There will be no more waiting until the last second on the play clock.

Coaching on the Run

Different from years past there is no waiting around to explain stuff. This coaching staff understands that elaborately explaining stuff for a long time can happen in meetings and film. Whenever coaching happens now, it is done on the run to maximize practice time. Whatever happens with the Noles this season, I can guarantee you they will be organized, and prepared.


I wish I could give you more information on these two units, but opinions have to wait until I see them in pads. The offensive line was working on their zone steps, slanting defenders, and inside hands. The defensive lineman were working on limiting separation, and pass rushing moves. Odell Haggins is still the best at what he does and has some monsters this year. Fred Jones is one of the shorter defensive lineman, but he has some of the best technique.

A problem that is still burdening the offensive tackles (this is carried from last year) is that they keep turning their hips in pass protection instead of keeping shoulders square. In the clip above you you can see some of our defensive ends make our offensive tackles skinny since they are turning their hips. Coach Frey seems to be clicking with the offensive line well though.

Quick Observations

  • James Blackman has the best arm strength (yes I know Francois is not healthy yet)
  • Francois is still very limited
  • Both offensive and defensive units celebrates when a teammate does any big play
  • Hockman will still need some more time to develop
  • Amari Gainer who is an early enrollee LB, I project him to get playing time this season

Offensive Plays I noticed

  • Zone
  • Fast Screens
  • Power
  • Various Passing Plays (I do not know their route tree yet)

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