BATON ROUGE, La. — LSU held its first fully-padded practice of the 2016 preseason Monday morning, but with the entire session closed to the media it was up to the word of Les Miles to get a handle on what actually happened on the fields of the Charles McClendon practice complex.
Fortunately, Miles is rarely at a loss for words.
Happy with Harris
Everyone knows what Leonard Fournette can do for the Tiger offense, so of course the preseason questions revolve around quarterback Brandon Harris. On Monday, Miles praised the junior in trademark Milesian fashion.
“Harris made a couple of nice touch throws that I really enjoyed,” Miles said. “I enjoyed it significantly.”
Miles is particularly impressed with the QB’s demeanor this August.
“He shows poise and he’s deliberate when he’s supposed to be,” Miles said. “It seems to me he’s improving, and that’s what I want him to continue to do.”
Pads don’t equal actual tackling
The addition of full pads allowed the Tigers to get more physical than previous practices, but not too physical.
“We did no live tackling,” Miles said. “We did some ‘Big Cat’ and some of those things. We went good-versus-good, but we did no live tackling. We’ve admonished players for contact that’s not prescribed.”
The amount of live contact will be ramped up ever-so-slightly as the Tigers approach Saturday’s intra-squad scrimmage.
“We’re not trying to block our teammates into the dirt or tackle them aggressively,” Miles said. “Before the scrimmage Saturday, we’ll do as much as 10-15 snaps live a drill.”
Clapp practices, but limited
Sophomore guard Will Clapp was able to return to practice Monday, though Miles still is taking it easy on him following a hip surgery procedure that took place after spring training.
“We’re trying to temper his exposure,” Miles said.
He also said the luxury of depth on the offensive line is not a factor in easing Clapp back in, though it is an added bonus.
“We’re going to do that, period, based on having a guy continue to heal and not expose him in a way that could slow his heal,” Miles said. “We’re growing some depth when we take a guy like Clapp out.”
Bower to return, Washington out
A pair of defensive ends are on the mend.
Tashawn Bower wasn’t able to participate in the team practice, but he is taking part in individual drills.
Fellow end Isaiah Washington was not at practice at all, Miles confirmed.
“94? I did not see 94 in number. I didn’t see him. Just wanted to let you know one more time: I didn’t see him.”