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Training Camp Report: Quick Hits From Day 16

That's a wrap.

The Rams' 2017 training camp at UC Irvine is officially in the books. The team held their 16th and final practice of camp on Thursday morning, finishing with a light non-padded session. The day's work focused on walking through various formations in preparation for the Rams' preseason matchup with the Raiders. The Rams will head to Oakland tomorrow with kickoff set for Saturday night at 7 p.m.

Check out the quick hits from the Rams' last day of training camp:


Field-level observations

  • The Rams spent a lot of time in today's practice working on offense-only and defense-only drills. For receivers, tight ends, and quarterbacks, Thursday's session included another set of ball protection drills — a part of practice that is quickly becoming a familiar trend. On the opposite end of the field, the defense worked heavily on stripping the ball and pass deflections.
  • In the team's 11-on-11 work, quarterback Jared Goff hit wide receiver Robert Woods on a downfield pass for a touchdown. Goff also completed a few midrange passes to wide receiver Sammy Watkins, giving fans a preview for what they will see on Saturday.
  • Cornerback Dominique Hatfield recorded his third interception in the last three days when he picked off a short pass from Dan Orlovsky.
  • On the offensive line, Jamon Brown and Rob Havenstein continued to take reps at right guard and right tackle, respectively. McVay said after practice that although the line is "a constant work in progress," the two would continue on in these positions heading into the regular season.
  • Cornerbacks Mike Jordan, Kayvon Webster, and Nickell Robey-Coleman were held out of the last day of training camp. Linebacker Mark Barron also did not participate.  

McVay addresses Donald

Earlier today a report surfaced from ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter, that defensive tackle Aaron Donald might take his contract holdout into the regular season after missing training camp.

After practice on Thursday, McVay said both sides "were still continuing to try and find a solution," regardless of the reports circulating the media.

"Our approach is exactly the same," he said. "He's a very important part of what we want to do, [but] in the meantime, we've got a lot of great guys out here that are working hard and getting ready for this Oakland game. Whether that report is true or not, and we're still trying to find that solution to get Aaron here and be a part of what we're doing and if not we need to be ready to adjust."

Josh Hart pays a visit to Rams Camp

One of the newest Lakers' shooting guards, Josh Hart, made an appearance at the Rams training camp on Thursday. The former Villanova standout and NCAA champion stopped by Rams Camp Live to talk about his transition from college to the NBA and his excitement at becoming a part of the L.A. sports culture.

A rookie's take on training camp

While training camp is a valuable opportunity for all 90 players on the roster to get back on field and prepare for the regular season, it is especially important for the rookies in transitioning from college to the NFL.

Tight end Gerald Everett said that in his opinion, training camp "went extremely well" on both an individual and team level. Although he experienced camp in college at South Alabama, Everett was quick to point out the new challenges that an NFL camp presents for rookies.  

"The learning curve in the league is the biggest thing for me," he said. "The demand to win is greater here than I have ever experienced and the time consumption is on a whole new level to where I can't even remember what day it is."

And while he spent countless hours on field and in the classroom throughout the last 16 days, Everett said the biggest thing he gained was the "ability to digest information as quickly as possible."

"The defense really knows how to disguise different looks before the snap," Everett said. "And it has been cool learning how to really adapt on the fly as fast as you can. I think I have progressed a lot over the last two weeks just with getting back into football."

A successful camp overall

After practice McVay took the time to address the media and discuss the team's outlook heading into Week 2 of the preseason. After 16 practices at UC Irvine, McVay said that the team was "not where they wanted to be," but was "heading in the right direction."

"I think in terms of what you what to get out of training camp, continuing to try to connect as a team, continue to get better in your offense and defense, and special teams systems, we've gotten a lot of things accomplished," McVay said. "I couldn't be more pleased with the way the guys competed, went about the meetings, and when we practiced every single day. It's been a great group to be around."

As the team prepares to take on Oakland, McVay said that Saturday's game would provide them with a great assessment of the team's development, especially on offense. The Raiders will present the Rams' with two of the best pass-rushers in the league in linebackers Khalil Mack and Bruce Irvin, while on defense the Rams will face a top-tier duo in quarterback Derek Carr and wide receiver Amari Cooper.

"I think that experience, especially for younger players at any position, is extremely beneficial and that's something that we don't take lightly," he said. "We know we're going to get an opportunity to go against a great front and great defense in the Oakland Raiders and it's going to be a great evaluation tool for us."

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