Tuesdays OTA practice saw some fireworks with two of the newest additions to the team. Jihad Ward was involved in multiple altercations, and he’s not looking to pick a fight with the little guys either. Any rookie who’s brave enough to take on Kelechi Osemele is someone we probably won’t have to worry about if ever Adam Jones decides to pile drive his head into a helmet.
In addition to Ward making his presence known after the whistle, he seemed to be drawing rave reviews regarding his play before it.
“He’s probably a little quicker than I anticipated. He’s a serious kid, so he really studies hard and works at it, takes great pride in it. I see him flash a little more than I anticipated, in terms of having quickness and the ability to find the football. Some defensive linemen are stuck on blocks and they’re wrestling the block all the time. Guys will run right by them and they don’t have the awareness to see them. You can coach them through that, but really that’s been pretty natural. He’s pretty natural when it comes to wanting to find the ball carrier and wanting to find the quarterback. That’s been a pleasant surprise.”
Jack Del Rio on Jihad Ward
Ward was one of the controversial draft picks by the expert fan community, but eventually, we’re just going to have to trust Reggie McKenzie because he seems to be figuring out this whole drafting thing.
Mario Edwards Jr is still on the sideline recovering from neck injury and even though his prognosis is seen as positive, it’s still unknown how and when he’ll be making a full recovery. If Edwards is to miss extended time, we might all be very glad we chose Jihad Ward in the 2nd round of 2016, that is, all of us besides the teammates who have to deal with him each day in practice.