Welcome to our daily Oregon practice reports on Rob Moseley’s blog. Rob will take over as the primary writer of these updates on Friday, but until then, Andy McNamara provides his take on the workouts.
First off, I apologize for any typos or delay in posting this report ahead of time as my typing is limited to one hand. It's a long story, but it may or may not be related to Shark Week. So in an effort to consolidate key strokes, on to the report for the Ducks' fourth of 22 practices during camp.
Venue: Outdoor practice fields.
Format: Shells (helmets and shoulder pads).
Situations: The Ducks added a couple of new situational periods, including their hurry-up drill "Fuji", and continued with a variety of different down and distance and special teams situations.
Highlights: Seeing Arik Armstead (6-8, 280), Deforest Buckner (6-7, 286) and Christian French (6-5, 244) in the same front 7 during 11 on 11. It's one thing to read their heights and weights on a roster, but quite another to see them with shoulder pads on at the line of scrimmage, All three were recently tabbed as having 1st or 2nd round talent in an assessment by HeismanPundit.com. Issac Dixon stood out Thursday in a crowded defensive backfield, breaking up a pass that Daryle Hawkins had appeared to reel in. Hawkins later put some great downfield moves after a sideline grab to shake safety Oshay Dunmore. Avery Patterson got things going for the defense on the second play of practice, intercepting Marcus Mariota for what would have been a pick-6. Fellow DB Dior Mathis made one of the final plays of the day, stopping Kenny Bassett for a 5-yard loss in the backfield.
Most entertaining period: 11 on 11, 1st and 2nd down. The No. 1 defense and No. 2 offense both had good days in my opinion.
Other observations: Mark Helfrich may not talk as fast as Chip Kelly, but his quickness to the ball after the whistle is at a different level ... Helfrich told local reporters after practice that coaches can typically identify potential redshirts by this point, but this group of newcomers has been impressive to a man ... Bralon Addison made several nice catches on the day ... The weather was ideal with occasional sun breaks and the a nice breeze.
Up next: The Ducks will wear full pads for the first time Friday.