Most all of the questions were muffled to the point where I couldn't make out clearly what was being asked, but I think I did a decent job of capturing Gus Malzahn's answers. I could probably go back through and listen again and clean it up, but honestly, I'm busy with work stuff on a conference planning trip and I don't have the time or inclination to.
The Bad: Kyle Davis isn't back, yet, and no one is saying what the issue is. Hopefully that gets worked out, soon. That's really the only bad to come out of this one.
The Good: I love hearing the injured players are getting back at it. I'm stoked to see what Nick Coe can do when he's healthy. I really hope Jamel Dean is able to get on the field this Fall, too. He's been through a ton in his efforts to reach the field.
Now, let's get to the press conference!
- Good to be back from Spring Break, not a whole lot of new install, mostly review. Energy stood out even after the days off and a long break. Character of team stood out in that situation.
- Thursday's practice will be red zone oriented, putting everything in situationally for a scrimmage Saturday to evaluate the guys.
- JF3 will be primarily WR for rest of the Spring.Great attitude, wants to help however he can.
- Kyle Davis still handling personal business. May not be back this Spring. Will be back before Fall (he did emphasize that).
- Tyler Queen granted release. Fine young man and wish him the best.
- Better ability to focus on QB position now? Yeah, Chip has a good plan, easier to evaluate with a smaller number. Sean did 7on7 today, won't do team stuff, still on a pitch count, but he's out there throwing where Chip can evaluate him.
- "Talk about Tyler; had some bad luck." Yeah, had a setback with elbow injury out of high school, multiple shoulder surgeries. Great kid. Smart kid.
- Who can tackle, who can protect the football, who can make a play, those are the things they're evaluating in the Spring as they are evaluating and rotating guys. People react differently in more game-like situations. Not just the young guys, they see things in the older guys, too. Challenging people to make the next step. Looking to see the young guys who they think can make immediate impacts.
- Standpoint from D last year to this time this year is night and day. They know who they are. Off to a good start.
- JF3's focus is developing at WR and Special Teams [Please let him be a returner!]
- Use some "non-traditional" RPOs.
- Other QBs - "I'd say good, we're not throwing a whole bunch of plays at 'em, it's trying to get good at a few things." Trying to gauge their reactions, calmness in pocket, progressions, etc. Not ready to say any of them have "arrived or not arrived." Last 5 practices tend to make things clear.
- Malik will be out there in scrimmage situations.
- Woody got to Auburn late, didn't get to go through summer with the team. This is his first real chance to compete for playing time. Can tell he's more urgent than before.
- Talented group of WRs that have experience now. They've got a year under the belt, Coach Burns is challenging them to raise their level as a group. Make some plays outside of the original offense. Playing hard. Good attitude.
- Darius Slayton had first practice today. Trying to work him back in. Got a few reps. Each practice will get him more along. Has the ability to be one of the leaders of the group.
- On injured players Dinson and Dean... coming along well. Should be fully cleared this summer.
- At RB, where is the focus? More on younger guys or the starters? - Asking them to do new things out of the backfield, are focusing some of the young guys, but "no one's arrived," all have to take the next step.
- Nick Coe and Paul James III back at practice (were back day before left for Spring Break). Not saying they're 100%, but they're back and improving.