Some of the highlights from the media sessions with quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and coach Mike Zimmer from earlier today …
From Zimmer …
– He was pleased overall with yesterday’s practice — the team’s first in pads — but said the team needs to re-learn how to practice safely in pads. There were a few times during team passing competition when Zimmer had to scream at the players to keep a safe distance from the quarterbacks. “It was the first day,” Zimmer said. “Guys were geared up. We have to learn how to practice in pads continually. But, yeah, there were a couple times when they were too close [to Bridgewater]. Sharrif [Floyd] bumped into a guard and he bumped into Teddy and Teddy hit the ground one time. So we have to be smart about that.”
– Defensive tackle Shamar Stephen was taken off the non-football injury list and participated in the walkthrough this morning. He’ll practice this afternoon. That leaves only cornerback Josh Robinson, who is on PUP with a pectoral injury, as the lone active player not practicing.
– Linebacker Anthony Barr, who is coming back from two knee injuries since late last season, will continue to have his team-period reps increased this afternoon. He’s making steady progress and didn’t have any negative effects from yesterday’s heavier load.
– Zimmer talked about the “several talks” he’s had to have with safety Antone Exum to get him to understand all that goes into being a pro. Apparently it’s working to Zimmer’s liking because Exum, according to Zimmer, has changed his behavior and “has grown up a lot” since his rookie season a year.
– Asked just how raw rookie third-round draft pick Danielle Hunter is, Zimmer said, “He’s a lot less raw than we thought.”
– Zimmer on receiver Cordarrelle Patterson’s first three days of camp: “He’s been impressive. So, you know, today’s a new day. We’ll see how he does today. Hopefully, today is just as good as yesterday. I don’t know that he’s turned the corner yet. But he’s definitely going around it.” Patterson, who was benched last season because he was lost in the new offense, still is running with the second team.
From Bridgewater …
– Bridgewater on the first practice and the heat: “It takes fantasy football to reality football. I heard some people complain about the weather yesterday. This is a beautiful day in South Florida.”
– Bridgewater spent time talking to Hall of Fame running back and current NFL Network analyst Marshall Faulk, who was at camp on Tuesday. Faulk talked to him about becoming more of a leader. “He was like, it’s going to have to be me [leading] at some point. Those moments when you step up to that leadership role will sometimes define the course of your career. Hearing those words from him meant a lot to me. I’m not going to do anything differently. I lead with conviction, lead from within and just be myself.”