It’s easy to get excited by the early news coming out of OTAs and mini-camp, but the hype often doesn’t predict reality. However, you can get a glimpse into the philosophy going into preseason and get an idea of who may surprise in the coming months. Coach Quinn has consistently emphasized competition across the entire roster, and it looks like mini-camp is showing that talk to be true.
1 of the standout players right now is De'Vondre Campbell. Calling adjustments pre-snap, covering TEs well, looks comfortable in the scheme— Andrew Hirsh (@andrewhirsh) June 14, 2016
Campbell is not the only rookie getting snaps with the first team unit either. Deion Jones was seeing time with the first team along with his draft mate. The Falcons sixth round pick - Wes Schweitzer - is also getting looks at RG with the first-team. Fans who remember the previous coaching regimes probably can’t recall rookies getting any first team looks unless they were a first or second round pick. Under Quinn, they’re all getting opportunities to prove themselves.
Looks like Compton and Schweitzer getting the looks at right guard. Person was just the backup center. Lots of mixing and matching— vaughn mcclure (@vxmcclure23) June 14, 2016
The reason is simple and Quinn confirmed it on Tuesday after camp concluded.
DQ says he wants to get first team reps for all young players to see what they can do. @FalcoholicDW— Jeanna (@jeannathomas) June 14, 2016
None of this is to say that every rookie will earn a starting spot. That would be a ridiculous expectation, and fans shouldn’t get that in their minds going into the coming months. However, you can expect that this coaching staff is serious about giving every young player the chance to prove themselves. We may find a that some guys are ready to contribute at a high level, while others could prove to need more time to develop. Either way, it's clear that Dan Quinn intends to find out during camp.
What are your thoughts on so many rookies getting first-team opportunities in mini-camp?