At one point during Saturday's practice for the Miami Dolphins, the first in pads this training camp, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh sped past right guard Billy Turner and before one could blink, was at quarterback Ryan Tannehill's ankles.
If this had been an actual game, he would have been in the quarterback's chest.
No, it is not surprising that an experienced, perennial Pro Bowl player gets the better of a potential first-year starter. But this play was typical of the lessons Suh administered to Turner.
Meanwhile, at the left guard spot, Jamil Douglas split snaps with Dallas Thomas. And he was perhaps the most impressive of the three young guards vying for a starting job.
Thomas wasn't bad, either although he did give ground on a couple of passing plays, allowing the linemen to be in Tannehill's face.
"Even going into, it's not like I didn't know how good he was, it's not like anyone doesn't know how good he is," Turner said of Suh. "I feel blessed being given the opportunity to get reps against him.
"I'm getting better everyday. Having an opportunity to go against the best d-line in the NFL has helped me be more accomplished. Suh has taught me you have to be ready for everything ... He'll use a couple of moves on you and then he sets you up for something else. He power rushed me a couple of times and then, all of a sudden, he used a quick on me."
Yes, it is going to be a baptisim by fire for Billy Turner. It could help him because he's not likely to face a much better defensive tackle in games this year.
Some practice notes:
***The offense, despite its trouble blocking Suh, seems to be well ahead of where it was a year ago -- or even in recent memory.
My recollection is that the defense has typically dominated the offense early in camp. Indeed, last year, for example, the offense had trouble simply completing a shotgun snap. This year there's none of that, there are fewer penalties and the ball doesn't hit the ground as often as the past when the first-team is on the field.
That doesn't mean the entire defense has struggled consistently. The second (11 on 11) team period of the day went to the defense, with much pressure on Tannehill, as you've already read.
***Jay Ajayi, who left practice with cramps on Friday, returned today. Will Davis missed practice.
***The assumption has been that Jamar Taylor will compete exclusively outside at cornerback while Brice McCain has the slot corner position locked up. Well, maybe not.
McCain has been getting some snaps outside while Taylor has been working some inside. McCain has so far been the more effective player. Yes, it is early.
***The right guard getting second-team reps with either LG Dallas Thomas or LG Jamil Douglas? Jeff Linkenbach.
***Cedric Thompson had an interception at the expense of McCleod Bethel-Thompson, who incidently is working with the third team. It was not a great practice for him today. Josh Freeman is running fourth-team.
***Jordan Cameron is Miami's starting tight end. But Dion Sims got first-team reps today and coach Joe Philbin was effusive about Sims and how well he moves around.
"I think he’s moving as well as he’s ever moved since he’s been here," Philbin said. "As you know, we use an extensive two-tight end package and Dion Sims I think has really had a good offseason and his training camp so far is good."