ASHBURN — Montez Sweat, Charles Leno Jr. and Steven Sims were all present at Wednesday's Washington Football Team OTAs after missing last week's open practice, but Chase Young was still absent, and Jonathan Allen wasn't around, either.
Even without two of the team's top defenders, though, plenty of notable things took place. Here's what stood out:
- Taylor Heinicke wore just a hat during the morning's two-hour proceedings and he didn't hop in for any 11-on-11 work. The reason, as Ron Rivera revealed after, was because Heinicke took an elbow to the face during a previous walkthrough from one of his running backs, and the gash that resulted from the collision required stitches. "Football season started early for me," Heinicke told reporters in a press conference, while sporting a large Band-Aid over his left eye.
- Here's another quarterback bullet — and it's not about Ryan Fitzpatrick OR Kyle Allen. Steven Montez, who was signed as an undrafted passer last year, was spotted taking third-string reps at that position but also was involved in other, non-QB drills, including some special teams stuff. Montez is thicker than his other signal-calling comrades, and Rivera explained to the media that with COVID-19 still a potential issue, he wanted to see Montez in a few different roles just in case something funky happens and he needs someone to fill multiple jobs. Montez is vaccinated and had the virus, so Rivera feels like he could be a perfect pinch hitter in any bizarre, emergency situation.
- Last week, a Dyami Brown deep ball was the highlight of OTAs. This time around, Logan Thomas registered the best grab, courtesy of a bullet from Fitzpatrick. It was near the end of the day's action, as Fitzpatrick looked left and picked out the tight end in hopes of notching a completion. The throw, however, was a tad behind Thomas, who was breaking toward the sideline — yet Thomas managed to reach behind him with one hand and snare the toss anyway, even as cornerback Kendall Fuller charged in on him. While Thomas isn't the most agile threat at tight end, he's adept at using his body to ward off coverage and, in 2020, he did produce a couple of spectacular catches (think back to his TDs in New York and Philly). The guy just continues to improve rapidly.
- Steven Sims and Isaiah Wright both hauled in touchdowns, and while it may be tempting to dismiss any scoring strike in June, for guys like Sims and Wright, every moment matters. Sims' end zone trip was made possible by a nicely-lofted Fitzpatrick floater that Sims was able to run under, while Wright came down with a pretty corner shot from Allen. Those two played major minutes in 2020 but are firmly in danger for 2021, which speaks to the added depth at wideout.
- Jamin Davis, once again, lined up at middle linebacker with the starting defense. That's where he was in the first edition of OTAs, so this is beginning to get slightly intriguing. He was flanked by Cole Holcomb and Jon Bostic, which is the expected starting trio for that crew. Davis being in the center of it, though, wasn't necessarily the projected place for him. It's still too early to say he'll be there in Week 1, but it's worth keeping tabs on if this trend continues at minicamp next week.
- Curtis Samuel and Saahdiq Charles were off working on the side fields on Wednesday. Samuel was there because he felt a "twinge" in his groin, per Rivera, while the staff was simply being cautious with Charles and not trying to overwork him.
- New safety Bobby McCain did his fellow ex-Dolphin dirty when he picked off Fitzpatrick on an errant toss over the deep middle. Fitz led his target just a bit too much, which allowed McCain to cause the turnover and take off the other way. McCain is still on the second unit, which is understandable considering he basically just arrived. Kam Curl and Deshazor Everett have been the leaders at safety thus far, with Landon Collins on the mend for the near future.