The Falcons took the field today in sweltering Flowery Branch for the second day of minicamp. We're seeing some progress as guys get more comfortable in the scheme, and it stood out today that players were about as fast and physical as they could be without getting in trouble with the league for violating the CBA.
One thing that stood out today was a slight shift in coach Dan Quinn's approach with practice. At the end of the day, they ran a two-minute drill. If the offense converted it to a score, they earned the right to do 10 push-ups. The defense allowed the conversion and lost, and they weren't allowed to do push-ups. The losing side didn't get an opportunity to get better, according to Quinn.
Quinn talks a lot about the attitude and the mindset that he wants this team to play with, and that culture is really evident.
Here's what we learned in Day 2
- C.J. Goodwin, who played receiver in college, is 6'4 and has the length that Quinn et al are looking for in the defensive backfield, and that's part of the reason he's been converted to cornerback. What has been unexpected is how well he's taking to the new position. Goodwin had a pick yesterday, and he added another interception today.
- The Falcons are trying out a receiver, Donatella Luckett, and he's wearing jersey No. 84. That was jarring.
- Devonta Freeman hauled in a really nice catch on a ball that was just slightly off target. He had to work for it and pulled it in.
- Austin Hooper seems to be getting up to speed quickly. He hauled in a touchdown pass late in practice.
- Akeem King took some reps outside opposite Desmond Trufant, with Robert Alford working in the nickel.
- Wes Schweitzer, Atlanta's sixth-round selection this year, got first-team reps at guard again.
- Matt Ryan and Matt Schaub subbed in as holders for the kickers today. Quinn said Matt Bosher had been excused from practice to attend to a family matter, and that Bosher is back in town and will return tomorrow. Quinn said that even Matt Ryan is not exempt from the "next man up" mentality, and if his number is called for this, he's got to be prepared.
- After practice, Julio Jones said Mohamed Sanu is going to be a big part of the offense. He also mentioned Aldrick Robinson as a potential playmaker at the receiver position because of Robinson's speed.
- Jones also said he expects the team to take more shots downfield this season. (Yes, please.)
- Highlights from today's playlist: Jump by Kriss Kross, the Fresh Prince of Bel Air theme song and California Love by Tupac. It was kids' day at minicamp, and the place was overrun with children of all ages, so Quinn kept the music pretty clean today.
Your thoughts on Day 2 of minicamp?