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Sunday, July 28, 2013
Inside 1-on-1 pass-rush drills

By Mike Reiss

FOXBOROUGH -- With the Patriots practicing in full pads for the first time in training camp, it was a chance to watch defensive linemen and offensive linemen in 1-on-1 rush drills.

Here was what we saw:

Standouts
RG Marcus Cannon -- Held his ground against the power of DL Tommy Kelly (6-6, 310) and quickness of DEs Jermaine Cunningham (6-3, 252) and Justin Francis (6-4, 270). Kelly powered through him on one rep, but Cannon -- stepping in for starter Dan Connolly (apparently not yet fully cleared for contact after offseason shoulder surgery) for most of the practice -- looks like he's off to a strong start in camp.

DE Chandler Jones -- Good matchup against starting LT Nate Solder and he fares well on two reps. Would have finished off the drill on a high note had rookie LT Elvis Fisher not stymied him on his final rep.

C Ryan Wendell -- A tactician who makes up for "undersized" status (6-2, 300)  by almost always seeming to be in the right position. Strong work against DL Marcus Forston twice (Forston generated some push on a third rush) and also DL Joe Vellano.

DL Vince Wilfork -- Took three reps against left guard Logan Mankins, at one time rocking Mankins on to his backside. Not many defensive linemen do that.

Want to see more of...
DE/LB Marcus Benard -- Five-year veteran showed quickness on an inside move against starting RT Sebastian Vollmer. Benard (6-2, 260) appeared to be a bit quicker than the other backup DEs in this drill. But on a second rep, when he didn't win on his initial move, veteran OT Will Svitek handled him.

DE Jake Bequette -- Handled in 2-on-2 combination work when paired with Justin Francis and going against Logan Mankins and Nate Solder, but later shows quickness on an outside rush against Nate Solder. 

Solid as usual...
DE Rob Ninkovich -- High-motor shows up in successful rushes against Sebastian Vollmer and rookie R.J. Mattes. 

Off-the-radar underrated performer
OT Will Svitek -- Success against Jake Bequette, Jermaine Cunningham and Marcus Benard.

Knocking off the rust ...
LT Nate Solder -- Chandler Jones challenges him, as does Jake Bequette on a day when the top offensive tackles worked to get their timing down and absorb contact for the first time.

RT Sebastian Vollmer -- Had his hands full with DEs Rob Ninkovich and Benard, as well as LB Dont'a Hightower (who took one rep in rush drill off the edge).