OGDEN — Another wave of smoky haze from Western wildfires rolled into the Wasatch Front on Saturday as Weber State football entered Day 4 of fall camp.
Players added shoulder pads and appeared to have energy despite the heat and entering the grind of camp, so coaches are seeking consistency as a next step in practice progress.
“We’re still not lined up right sometimes, and that’s all normal during camp,” offensive coordinator Dave Schramm said. “We’re not getting deep enough in our drops at quarterback, or we’re not running the routes at the right depth, or we’re not hitting the hole exactly. All those things that come up at the beginning of camp, it takes time to develop that rhythm, that timing, that precision. But we’re doing OK.
“I like our guys. The effort’s been awesome. We’ve got great competition at a lot of positions and that’s what will make them better.”
Head coach Jay Hill said overall, the team is looking much better than in spring and that much of the competition will serve to flesh out the depth chart.
“In a lot of positions, there are guys who have played a lot of reps and we know we can win with those guys,” Hill said. “We need to find out in each position group those backups that can still step forward and need to step forward to help us.”
One of the biggest position battles, of course, is at quarterback. In Saturday’s practice, sophomore Jake Constantine took a bulk of reps in team drills, along with freshman Kaden Jenks and sophomore Braden Miles.
Jenks threw a few completions that led to a 10-yard touchdown toss to freshman Devon Cooley in a red-zone type drill, while Constantine connected with several players, including Cooley and Rashid Shaheed, in a hurry-up drill that spanned the field.
“Those guys who are taking the snaps right now are the guys we think are going to give us the best chance,” Schramm said, noting that who takes reps when changes with each practice. “We’re not really operating on all cylinders right now, though, so maybe somebody else will emerge. It’s still early in camp.”
Injury inserted itself into the battle Friday when senior quarterback Rathen Ricedorff suffered a hamstring pull. He did not take reps at QB on Saturday.
“We’ve had a few hamstrings here and there, but those are the things we expect to heal up and be ready to go by Game 1,” Hill said. “Luckily they happened early, so we should get them back soon.
“Dealing with injuries is part of the game, but the best guys have to play. Sometimes you find those guys when someone else gets hurt above them.”
At quarterback, Schramm said he’s evaluating how the passers grade in accuracy, if they make good reads in their progressions, if they have good footwork and how they grasp the offense.
Both Schramm and Hill said most position groups are well ahead of where they were in spring camp and are pleased with the work players put in on their own with practice and film study.
“It’s early and we have a long ways to go, but ... if we get all of our key guys on the field and they stay healthy, we have a chance to be really good again.”