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Notes from spring practice: Day 9

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Posted: Tuesday, April 12, 2011 11:58 pm | Updated: 2:41 pm, Fri Aug 29, 2014.

  • Wide receiver Nathan Palmer got hit just about as hard as someone can be hit in a spring practice on Tuesday morning. Sophomore Dominique Ware lined up Palmer on an out route and sent the wideout to the ground. Palmer was back up laughing about the hit later, but it took the senior a few minutes to regain his bearings.
  • Quarterback Jordan Lynch and wide receiver Anthony Johnson continued to build on the chemistry they have built this spring. Lynch hit Johnson on a 30-yard fade pattern run to perfection by Johnson.

“I’m at the point now that I know the buttons of the players to push, and I know the strengths and the weaknesses of the players,” Doeren said. “Instead of just looking at what they can do athletically, you are getting to know their mindsets and I can help guys with little things.”

  • In their third day back at practice without linebacker Devon Butler, who is recovering from a gunshot wound in the hospital, the NIU defensive players played with a lot of energy. Doeren thought the solid day may have had something to do with the way the offense performed in Saturday’s practice.

“I think both sides had a good day,” Doeren said. “Defense started good, and then finished with a few three and outs, but anytime the offense has a good day, the defense is going to come back ready to play.”

  • Redshirt senior tight end Jack Marks hauled in a pass from Jordan Lynch in between two defenders, and held on to the ball after being knocked around by both. Tight end figures to be tightly contested, but the position is not as deep as Doeren would like.

“We are going to force defenses to substitute and defend a lot of things, but if the tight ends aren’t playing well we have a lot of receivers,” Doeren said.

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