Aside from the "Did he or didn't he," confusion that surfaced last night after Jack Del Rio told the media that the team had reached an agreement with first round pick Tyson Alualu, the big story in training camp so far is defensive end Aaron Kampman. Just 8 months removed from ACL surgery, Kampman is practicing once a day without a limp or even a knee brace.
Either Aaron Kampman had a rather clean and routine surgery on the torn ACL he suffered late last season in Green Bay or he's a super human with heal powers akin to that of Wolverine of the X-Men.
I'd like to believe the latter, myself.
That being said, Kampman is limiting himself to one practice a day. Generally in the morning session he will participate in individual drills, but sit out of the team drills. In Sunday's full-padded practice Kampman was a full participant and looked good doing it. Kampman was able to get consistent pressure on the quarterback when he was on the field. He'd have had a couple sacks had it been a live game, one of which would have been a blindside hit on the quarterback where Kampman came free.
I don't want to get too excited about Kampman yet, because the fact of the matter is he's only 8 months removed from tearing a major ligament in his leg. While Kampman is one of the hardest working players in the NFL, it's still staggering the progress he's made so far. In mini-camp I expected him to practice once a day once training camp rolled around, but I don't think many expected him to be at this level this soon.
The Good: Aaron Kampman
The Bad: Tiquan Underwood
Despite having a good summer, Underwood has come back down to earth so far in training camp. Sunday he suffered numerous drops on what should have been routine catches. Every so often he will make a nice grab plucking the ball out of the air, but most of the time he catches with his body and drops balls he simply shouldn't.
The Ugly: The Quarterbacks
The quarterbacks Sunday struggled quite a bit. I believe all three were intercepted at least once, and the Sunday night session ended with starting quarterback David Garrard being intercepted on an ill-advised pass into double coverage down the field. None of the quarterbacks seem to want to step up and take over. While it is still early in training camp, it is a bit troublesome to see Garrard and McCown struggling this much. It's a lot of bad reads and check downs right now. Hopefully it will improve as practice goes on.
Eugene Monroe bested rookie Larry Hart in a match up that was clearly in Monroe's favor. The Oklahoma is about leverage and brute power, and Monroe dwarfed Hart in each match up.
Austen Lane had been having an average camp so far until the whistle blew for the Oklahoma and he tossed tight end Zach Potter to the ground like it was nothing.
Interior lineman Uche Nwaneri was able to stone rookie defensive tackle D'Anthony Smith in each match up.
The most embarrassing match up was between safety Reggie Nelson and wide receiver Nate Hughes. Hughes was able to force Reggie Nelson backwards on each match up. Nelson was able to suplex the running back on one play, but well after the drill should have been over.