Throughout NFL training camps, Yahoo Sports will track the new faces, holdouts, injuries and position battles that will shape your team’s season. Check back to keep up with the league’s hottest news as it happens.
J.J. Watt’s social media game is already in shape
Even superstars like Houston Texans pass rusher J.J. Watt need credentials to verify their identities around the training camp facilities. Watt’s businesslike demeanor in his badge photo apparently caught the attention of The Action Network’s Darren Rovell, and put him right in Watt’s Twitter crosshairs.
That’s literally what I get paid to do Darren. https://t.co/FKcSqoRtfz
— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) July 25, 2019
Count it as his first big hit of the season.
After an offseason that included arthroscopic knee surgery in January, Watt entered camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list.
But as his credential headshot demonstrates, he’s ready to go. He passed his physical Thursday and has been added to the active roster.
J.J. Watt passed his physical and was moved from the Active/Physically Unable to Perform list to the active roster.
— James Palmer (@JamesPalmerTV) July 25, 2019
Tom Brady gets to work with new WR N’Keal Harry
As Tom Brady continues what seems like a never-ending battle against Father Time, he’ll have a new receiver to target. The Patriots used a first-round pick on WR N’Keal Harry, who got in some work with the future Hall of Famer on Thursday.
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) July 25, 2019
Harry looked good on this route, but he’s wearing a helmet, so we can’t get a good look at his hair. This is important because Harry was caught off guard earlier this week when he learned about the haircut that all New England rookies have to get when they join the team. He even pleaded with Brady to buy his way out of the hazing.
Dolphins’ position battles taking focus at camp
Dolphins second-year running back Kalen Ballage took the first snap of training camp ahead of Kenyan Drake on Thursday. Last season, Ballage ran 21.8 mph during a TD against the Vikings for the fourth-fastest scoring scamper in the NFL.
Kalen Ballage takes first snap in team drills at RB. Sooo...Interesting what that means for Kenyan Drake.
— Armando Salguero (@ArmandoSalguero) July 25, 2019
Running back isn’t the only position battle in Dolphins camp. There aren’t many quarterback competitions around the NFL this year, but Miami has one.
“I don’t have a concrete deadline, I’d say that,” Flores said. ”I think we’re in an evaluation process.”
Rosen would seem to be the favorite. The Dolphins traded a second-round pick to Arizona to get the 10th overall pick of last year’s draft. Fitzpatrick is a solid veteran but the Dolphins are unlikely to compete for a playoff spot this season and should want to get a long look at Rosen before next year’s draft. But it’s clear Rosen won’t be given the job.
Josh Rosen did a good job self-scouting his practice: “I had a slow start but finished pretty strong.” Among his highlights were a sharp TD to Nick O’Leary.
Ryan Fitzpatrick has been consistent since arrival but as Brian Flores made clear today battle is nowhere near decided yet. pic.twitter.com/XzB2kwTGKD
— Cameron Wolfe (@CameronWolfe) July 25, 2019
Redskins haven’t heard from Williams, shuffle line
Jay Gruden says he still hasn’t heard from left tackle Trent Williams — holding out over a contract dispute — as the Washington Redskins begin their first full practices. The team is apparently shifting Ereck Flowers over from guard to take first-team reps at the spot usually occupied by the 7-time Pro Bowler.
Jay Gruden still has not talked to Trent Williams and Williams has not reported for the first day of actual practices. The plan is to use Ereck Flowers at left tackle, abandoning the hope to play him at guard... for now.
— Les Carpenter (@Lescarpenter) July 25, 2019
Kimberley A. Martin covered Gruden’s approach to the chaos from Richmond.
Saints report to camp, but Michael Thomas doesn’t
The Saints are suddenly dealing with a holdout from one of their irreplaceable stars. Receiver Michael Thomas, who Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson reported wants to be the first receiver to make $20 million per season, did not report to Saints camp with his teammates on Thursday as he seeks a new contract. Thomas led the NFL with 125 catches last season.
If Thomas digs in and a compromise isn’t reached, it could be the most impactful training camp holdout across the league.
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