Training Camp

Farabaugh: Training Camp Observations (Day Six)

Well, my first day at camp this year came with a lot of anticipation for me. First, I get to see these rookies who I have only seen on tape live for the first time, plus all the standouts that I wanted to see live. I’ll say, I had a pretty good time watching all the guys go out and compete today. I have a lot of observations and thoughts from today, so, I’ll simply run through them. I think this has the potential to be a good team this year. I’m excited to finally get this season taking off.


  • Josh Dobbs is a complete mess. His accuracy was suspect, there were a few plays where he just completely overthrew his guy. He overthrew Xavier Grimble on one play and Steven Nelson picked it off. I’m not impressed by him at all. 
  • Mason Rudolph looks slightly better than Dobbs. He’s taken a step forward. He seems more comfortable in the pocket and goes through his progressions now. However, he goes through those progressions at a snail’s pace, the pressure always gets there.
  • I really like what I saw out of Devlin Hodges. He has a great feel for touch and has great ball placement. He made a few pretty throws due to that touch. He was the big winner of those backup QBs today.
  • I am liking what I see from Benny Snell in the receiving game. Natural hands and he took Devin Bush to town when they were one-on-one in routes. I think he still lacks some burst, but I am liking what I am seeing.
  • Ralph Webb is a longshot to make the roster, but he is a solid player. Good vision and burst in his game. He seems to be the clear RB4 right now to me.
  • Don’t expect to see Eli Rogers gone any time soon. Rogers is not only getting the first crack at slot snaps, but he is showing out too. He had a few highlight reel plays today, and is as good of a route runner as he has ever been.
  • Diontae Spencer is an impressive player. He’s quick, he’s fast, and he’s a really attentive route runner. I liked what I saw, but he has to show out in the return game.
  • Ryan Switzer is just as quick and shifty as ever. He is a mismatch still out of the slot. If anyone loses their spot to the ascending Spencer, though, it’s Switzer.
  • James Washington looks much better this year than last year. He looks quicker and faster, his routes look sharper, and he seems to be more in the game. I really like what I saw.
  • Diontae Johnson’s tape at Toledo really translated right over to what I saw today. His releases, route running, and technical ability are all as advertised. The guy can play. 
  • Zach Gentry was flexed out a ton. Both outside and in the slot. He made a nice contested catch grab and is a solid seam buster. That is what he is really. Not a great blocker, just flex him out and let him do work.
  • Christian Scotland-Williamson actually had a nice day. Has some powerful hands when blocking and made a great catch up the seam. He seems a bit stiff, but he was not bad at all.
  • Xavier Grimble seems just okay. Nothing special, not getting separation, routes aren’t particularly spectacular, but he is a very good blocker. Footwork and hands are very good. Still, I wasn’t overly impressed with him.
  • Matt Feiler is having a good camp. He looks more fluid and his anchor seems to have improved as well. I expect a step in the right direction for him. 
  • Jerald Hawkins is rough. The injuries have absolutely hurt his development as a raw guy coming out, but I am just not seeing. His technical ability is a mess and he’s not getting to his spots like he should. It’s an uphill battle for him.
  • B.J. Finney is as good as ever. The guy is a starting caliber offensive lineman at this point being used as great depth here. 
  • Casey Sayles is an underrated defensive lineman. Batted down a pass today and got a lot of push otherwise. He had a strong day.
  • Dan McCullers is very likely going to make this team. Every team drill he is getting pressure, pushing up the interior. If anything, he is solid depth, I see no reason why he needs cut at this point.
  • The Ola Adeniyi hype is incredibly legit. His burst and toolbox is really fun to watch. He’s the third best pass rusher on this team for sure, pushing for number two. Even against Feiler he pushed him back and threw him to the ground on one play. Bigger though is that he looked better in the coverage drill than I thought he would. He was a standout there. He’s taken it up a level this season.
  • Sutton Smith has really cooled off after a hot start. He needs to revamp that pass rush plan that he should have. He looked good when he went off-ball, but I am not seeing much as a pass rusher right now.
  • Ulysees Gilbert III has great athleticism live. He is always around the football. I think he has a real shot to make this team given what he can bring to the team — athleticism in the middle.
  • Devin Bush is who we thought he was today. He had a really nice rep against Switzer when covering a drag. Held him to only 3 yards because of his athleticism. He is lightning fast and has very good processing. 
  • Justin Layne has had some growing pains for sure. He is raw as we thought, but those ball skills have also been on display. He made a few good pass breakups today. Him and Diontae Spencer really went at it, with both winning a few reps. The technical aspects, especially his transitions, need work, though.
  • New Steelers CB Derrek Thomas is massive, but lanky too. He looks huge in person and his arms look like two vines. He does move well for his size, though, good to see that.
  • Artie Burns has his swagger back. That was something he was missing last season, but he is his old feisty self now. That is a great thing to see.
  • Steven Nelson’s big play ability is on full display. He is always in a position to make a play and has really good ball skills. He had a show out day today.
  • Cam Sutton might have been the most impressive DB I saw today. He looks like a much better player than last year. The game has seemingly slowed down for him. Great mirroring and matching and he is consistently blanketing his guys. I think he could have a good year.
  • Kam Kelly is comfortably positioned for a roster spot right now. He didn’t stick out other than he was just solid when targeted and looks fluid and instinctive. I like what I saw.
  • Jordan Dangerfield had himself a day today. He was flying around the field, made a few nice plays in the box, and had a heads up interception.
  • Marcus Allen was much better in coverage today than I expected. His pass breakup against Ryan Switzer was really nice. He looks to be in good position to be the dimebacker right now.
  • Ian Berryman has an absolute cannon for a leg, but there is not consistency in that leg, but there is far more in Jordan Berry’s honestly.
  • Chris Boswell looked solid today. He wasn’t pushing anything and was just drilling things right through the uprights. He was perfect today from what I saw, and it’s needed that he gets back on track. 
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