Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Thoughts on a visit to College Station
By ESPN.com staff
We'll be featuring the Aggies here on Friday, but here's a few leftovers from things that won't make it into Friday's stories.
It's too early to talk much about the depth chart at positions with a ton of competition, but defensive tackle Lucas Patterson was all over the place during 11-on-11 drills. For the Aggies defense to improve in a new 3-4 scheme, they'll need to control the gaps up front. That starts with the nose tackle -- if only by default. The 6-foot-4, 303-pound senior blew up a couple runs in the backfield and his penetration kept Christine Michael and Cyrus Gray largely contained.
"I think has been really strong in his play throughout just about the entire camp. I’m real excited about what he’s brought to the table," said coach Mike Sherman.
After making a couple plays in a row, Patterson got a lively slap on the helmet and celebratory hug from linebacker Michael Hodges, along with a pretty intense verbal congratulations I can't post here.
Jerrod Johnson is limited this spring after undergoing minor offseason shoulder surgery, and it's pretty easy to tell its killing him to sit out live, 11-on-11 drills. He spends most of his time lingering near Sherman during team work, but when the team starts working the option game and he gets to step under center, he gets a little spring in his step. Johnson told me the Aggies will be under center more this season, a welcome change for a guy with NFL aspirations. I'll have more on Johnson and plenty on both sides of the ball for Texas A&M on Friday. Sherman hasn't completely ruled out letting Johnson play some this spring, but he has no plans to take any chances."We’re not going to rush that," Sherman said. "I’m certainly not going to put him out there just because I want to see the offense win a couple of drills. We’re going to take our time and make a decision at some point."
Linebacker Garrick Williams and defensive back Lionel Smith have impressed the Aggies' leading tackler, Trent Hunter, this spring. Hunter said Smith broke up eight passes in a single scrimmage earlier this spring.