It was scorching hot out on Greentree as the Canes took the practice field in full pads. Manny Diaz himself said that this was going to be the hardest week of this teams 2019 season, and it seems like mother nature is assisting him in keeping his word.
The biggest question that needs to be answered this week is simply this: who is going to take the opening snap on August 24th. It still feels impossible to tell. My eyes tell me one thing, my brain tells me another.
Tate Martell doesn't look like the best passer on the team, but could his intelligence alone win him the job?
N’Kosi Perry has the most experience, but turnovers and inconsistency seem to be knocks on him that may be too burdensome for Manny Diaz and Dan Enos to move forward with.
Jarren Williams is the dark horse. He was highly touted out of high school, but we don't know what he is capable of on Saturdays. He has no game experience, unlike the other two guys competing.
But Williams was most impressive today. During 1-on-1’s, he and Perry were the only quarterbacks throwing to the group of wide receivers. Williams hit freshman WR Jeremiah Payton on a long ball that was right in the bread basket with Al Blades Jr. in coverage. He also hit WR Mike Harley in stride as he burned past S Derrick Smith.
Martell and the rest of the quarterbacks joined the rest of the group, but not for long.
Soon after, they broke off into 11-on-11 work and it was Perry who got the opportunity to run with the first team offense against the first team defense. He completed a pass to KJ Osborn on the sideline that led him enough to create separation from CB DJ Ivey and also scrambled for a solid gain as we were walking out of the facility.
And Williams was working with the scout team as this was going on.
As you can see, the Hurricanes aren't showing their hand when it comes to who they're feeling at quarterback at the moment. They are all getting equal reps, as Diaz has noted time and time again. However, Martell did get fewer reps with the first team than any other practice session I have watched.
As far as the rest of the team goes, the only major move was that John Campbell was the first team right tackle in place of Kai-Leon Herbert.
RB Cam’Ron Harris was also a full participant in practice despite rumors that he was injured during the scrimmage. He did have a sleeve on his right knee.
TE Brevin Jordan, WR Evidence Njoku, and DT Chigozie Nnoruka were all working in the sandpit and with medicine balls in full pads today. It’s not certain why they were out there yet, but certainly we will find out shortly and I will update this piece when we find out.