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Sights, sounds and notes from Florida State football spring practice

FSU takes the field for the second time this spring

TALLAHASSEE — Spring football is offcially underway heading into day two of practice this past week. Florida State head coach Mike Norvell spoke with the media earlier on Saturday detailing the passion and energy expressed by the team.

There were numerous top-tier recruits and former players that showed up over the first few days and here are some photo’s and video providing a glimpse into spring:

Notes and observations:

Indoor drills and stretches:

  • Camm McDonald was the vocal leader in the receiving group and took time to show the younger players a couple drills run by Randy Shannon.
  • Darion Williamson was great for most of the practice, running his routes with tight form while catching nearly every ball thrown his way.
  • Oregon transfer Trey Benson got some reps as RB1 both inside the practice facility and during 7 on 7.
  • Joshua Burrell had a great practice, continuing to show how good his hands are catching passes below his knees and two feet above his head on multiple occasions. He’s been able to make an impact on the inside and outside and looks to be a vital piece for next years offense.
  • Arizona State transfer Johnny Wilson has incredible footwork for his size and makes really sharp cuts back to the ball which is usually harder for an athlete standing at 6’7.
  • Illinois transfer Deuce Spann has trouble cutting and has a slow release off the line of scrimmage but with more reps he should continue to improve. He had better success on out routes than cutting inside for slants on day two. A big, fluid athlete who just needs to learn the way to run routes.
  • Tate Rodemaker had a tough time tonight, throwing late passes and overthrowing out routes. AJ Duffy on the other hand found success yet again, throwing tight window passes that were usually below the receivers chest but he also had the usual overwhelmed feel when he played in 7’s.

1 on 1: Receivers vs. Defensive backs

  • Shyheim Brown played excellent in one on one drills, I truly believed he played the best amongst DB’s on day two and he’s bound for a big leap. He made contact with the receivers right off the break and read their hips perfectly, earning three pass breakups.
  • Freshman Azareye’h Thomas was the only player to secure an interception in day two of practice, snagging a mean pick at the beginning of one on ones. Thomas did give up a couple catches on the day but boy does he flash.
  • Louisville transfer Greedy Vance was clearly struggling in the one on ones, getting beat in open field by Spann, Ja’Khi Douglas, and Mycah Pittman on three straights reps.

7 on 7 practice:

  • Linebacker DJ Lundy had a great day in coverage, breaking up a pass down the middle intended for Malik McClain and playing the outside coverage to help the corners. Amari Gainer had trouble in coverage tonight, leaving gaps down the middle relatively open for clear cut slants.
  • Johnny Wilson and McClain both had three receptions in this drill; they got the bulk of the targets most of the night.
  • Freshman running back Rodney Hill started the drill with two straight drops but he came back and caught a pass down the left sideline and added a one handed grab close to the line of scrimmage.
  • Demorie Tate had an up and down practice; he was able to play the short routes but he got beat a hand full of plays downfield.
  • Pittman caught a couple balls in the seven on seven drill and his focus on getting yards after the catch really helped him succeed.

11 on 11 practice:

  • Joshua Farmer had a lights out practice and you could really tell he’s been putting in work to condition his body. He was the first to stop the run on three separate occasions and helped stuff the line so players like Jared Verse and Fabien Lovett could get to the quarterback.
  • Travis had a great day during both drills and he was vocal with the receiving group on the sideline every time he was checked out.
  • McDonald definitely looks like he got faster in the past couple of moths and he played some of the downhill passes extremely well. Brian Courtney also had some good reps, showing his pass catching ability on 15-20 yard throws.