CATCHES OF THE DAY In the morning practice, cornerback Cary Williams almost intercepted a pass from Marc Bulger, but the ball deflected off his fingertips and landed in the arms of Donte' Stallworth. In the afternoon, John Beck dumped off a pass to rookie running back Curtis Steele that skipped off his hands and into those of linebacker Jason Phillips.
SACKS GALORE The defensive pass rush was rolling as linebackers Jarret Johnson and Albert McClellan and defensive tackle Brandon McKinney got to the quarterbacks for what would have been sacks. The defense could have had a fourth sack from defensive tackle Terrence Cody, but the play was negated by an illegal-contact penalty.
MORE PENALTIES In addition to the illegal contact call, the defense was flagged for offsides five times (once on linebacker Jameel McClain, once on rookie defensive tackle Arthur Jones and three times on an unspecified player). The offense committed eight penalties -- five for false starts (by tackles Michael Oher, Tony Moll and Joe Reitz, left guard Ben Grubbs and an unspecified player), twice for holding and once for illegal formation.
BUTTERFINGERS Running back Willis McGahee is usually very secure with the football, but he fumbled twice Saturday. The first miscue -- caused by linebacker Dannell Ellerbe -- was recovered by safety Haruki Nakamura. His second fumble bounced back into McGahee's hands, and several defensive players began exhorting the offensive coaches to begin fining players for fumbles.
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAY OF THE DAY A 42-yard field goal attempt by Billy Cundiff was blocked by safety K.J. Gerard, and Nakamura scooped up the football and raced down the right sideline to the end zone.
KICKING UPDATE Cundiff was 6-for-7 on field goals in the morning. He was successful from 20, 30, 39, 44, 46 and 51 yards, but missed the 42-yarder. Shayne Graham went 5-for-6 in the morning. He converted from 20, 30, 39, 44 and 51 yards, but knuckle-balled a 50-yarder wide left. Graham made all six of his attempts in the afternoon.
INJURIES Offensive tackle Jared Gaither (cramps) and tight end Davon Drew (hamstring) did not practice in the morning or afternoon. Cornerback Fabian Washington (knee) sat out the morning session but practiced in the afternoon while wearing a red mesh no-contact jersey over his normal jersey. Offensive tackles Stefan Rodgers (reasons unspecified) and Moll (reasons unspecified) and cornerback Walt Harris (Achilles tendon) practiced in the morning but sat out the afternoon session. Players who remain on the physically-unable-to-perform list are free safety Ed Reed (hip), center Matt Birk (elbow), cornerback Lardarius Webb (knee), linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo (quadriceps), offensive tackle Oniel Cousins (throat) and running back Matt Lawrence (knee). Tight end Todd Heap (swollen tonsils) is on the non-football illness list.
OVERHEARD "Take them shades off and put some glasses on!" -- Cory Redding in obvious disagreement with an official who threw a flag on the defense for jumping offside.
NEXT DAY'S SCHEDULE Sunday's morning practice starts at 8:45 a.m. and could run between 2 and 21/2hours. The afternoon session begins at 2:45 p.m. and is set to run about two hours.
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