ALLEN, Texas - Here are some observations from Tuesday’s Texas practice as preparation begins this week for the Texas vs. Nation Bowl at Eagle Stadium this Saturday in Allen, Texas.
- It was a good start of the week for Texas tight end DJ Grant who caught the ball well and showed good ease of movement. Coaches used him in a flex position and had no problems getting up the field. Was a hard guy to cover for these linebackers and safeties during the 7-on-7 and team drills. Clearly better than anyone he was matched up against.
- Defensive end Armonty Bryant of East Central Oklahoma physically is a nice looking kid at 6’4”, 262 pounds. Played with some pass rush moves and was difficult to handle off the edge. Didn’t give the tackles much of a hitting surface to deal with. Got off the snap well and on the tackles before they had a shot to react to him. Was in the backfield a bunch today.
- Cornerback Daxton Swanson of Sam Houston might not be the biggest guy at 5’10”, 187 but there were no defensive backs that played with the quickness that he showed this afternoon. First two reps up the field in one-on-one he was in such good position that he came down with interceptions. Showed nice ability to press, turn and run without a hitch. Was able to react to the ball in front and drive on the route to make the play. Was a hard guy to run away from with his speed and quickness.
- Receivers EZ Nwachukwu of Texas A&M and Skye Dawson of TCU were the clear class of the field today for the Texas squad. Nwachukwu can really cover some ground and gets in and out of his breaks in a hurry. When he has to come back for the ball, you see separation. Dawson is physically a tiny guy at 5’8”, 162 but he did take his routes inside and didn’t look like he was afraid to do so. Caught the ball easily and smoothly.
- Defensive tackle David King of Oklahoma started the practice very well during the 9-on-7 period where the offensive line struggled to block him but in the one-on-one pass rush, he couldn’t get a sniff. Texas A&M center Patrick Lewis and Oklahoma State guard Evan Epstein stoned him several times.
- Inside linebacker Ja’Gared Davis of SMU is most likely a great candidate for Dallas Day when the Cowboys bring in all the local players for a visit to Valley Ranch. I need to do some film work on this player because I think there is something there. In watching him today, I was impressed with his nose for the ball. It was rare that he was blocked and when he did get hooked up, he was off quickly. Nice awareness for his drops in coverage and when the ball came into his area, he was there for a play.