Gators in 2013 NFL training camps: 7/28 – 8/4

By Adam Silverstein
August 5, 2013

The 2013 NFL regular season is exactly one month away from kicking off on Thursday, Sept. 5.

More than three dozen former Florida Gators are currently working out with their respective teams and trying to either keep or earn roster spots for the upcoming year.

Below are select updates on some of these Gators for the second full week of training camp from July 28 to Aug. 4.

The Miami Dolphins and Dallas Cowboys squared off during the 2013 Hall of Fame Game, the first preseason game, in Canton, OH, on Sunday night.

RB MIKE GILLISLEE*, Miami Dolphins: Seven carries for 21 yards (long: 9)
LB JELANI JENKINS*, Miami Dolphins: Two tackles
C MIKE POUNCEY, Miami Dolphins: Started Hall of Fame Game
K CALEB STURGIS*, Miami Dolphins: Did not play – groin

QB TIM TEBOW, New England Patriots: Though cameras caught Tebow hauling in passes and protecting the ball in a drill last week, he will be nothing but a quarterback for the Patriots, according to offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. “He’s just practicing his open-field running,” McDaniels said. “We know Tim has a skill set that some of these other guys don’t possess in terms of ability to run with it, scramble with it when he has it in his hands. … He’s put in a lot of time and effort to improve his individual skill set to play the position of quarterback in our offense, and I think every day is a learning tool for him.” Tebow has also received a nod from starter Tom Brady. “We have good conversations,” Brady said, according to the Associated Press. “He loves playing football and that’s usually the type of guys who do well here.”

Read updates on seven other former Gators…after the break!

WR PERCY HARVIN, Seattle Seahawks: Though his surgery on Thursday “went very well,” according to head coach Pete Carroll, Harvin still has a long way to go until he can get back on the field for the Seahawks. The current plan is for Harvin to remain in New York for a couple of weeks to rehabilitate before he returns to Seattle, WA, to work with team doctors. There is hope among the Seahawks’ brass that Harvin will be able to suit up at some point this season as his hip surgery did not include a reshaping of his hipbone, a process that would have kept him out of action for the entire campaign.

LB JON BOSTIC*, Chicago Bears: Starting middle linebacker D.J. Williams suffered a right calf strain during training camp and may be out of action for a couple of weeks. In the interim, Bostic has moved onto the first team and will do everything in his power to try and win the starting job. “I’m really just taking it day by day. I’m not really looking ahead [to the regular season],” he told “I’m just looking forward to watching film and trying to get better on the stuff. I’ve just got to go out every day and do what they ask of me.” Bostic is already receiving rave reviews from his team’s defensive coordinator. “He’s steady, he’s solid, he doesn’t get rattled, he’s super smart, and he really wants to be good,” Mel Tucker told the team’s website. “He’s got a lot of work to do, and he’s getting better and better every day, so I really like him. I’m glad we have him. I think he has a chance to be a superb player, but it’s a work in progress.”

DE CARLOS DUNLAP, Cincinnati Bengals: Concussed during practice on Wednesday, Dunlap is expected to be out for an extended period of time. Even though head coach Marvin Lewis confirmed that Dunlap’s concussion was minor in nature, the team is going to be cautious with the player it just signed to a six-year, $40 million contract in the offseason. “Those are things that are a part of football,” Dunlap said of his penchant for being injured in a previous interview with “I feel like, as long as I can stay health, everything else will fall into place. When I’m out there [on the field], it’s like home. When I’m just standing out there watching, you can’t do nothing to benefit your teammates. There’s nothing like being out there with them.”

WR DEONTE THOMPSON, Baltimore Ravens: An opportunity to play a big role this season has fallen into Thompson’s lap as the Ravens, which lost a number of starters from their Super Bowl-winning team, are looking for receivers to step up in 2013. According to The Baltimore Sun:

Thompson has gotten a lot of reps with the first-team offense during camp and worked almost exclusively with the ones on Sunday. He was [Joe] Flacco’s favorite target and he got open in a variety of ways. He was very effective out of the slot, including one play where he ran a skinny post, snatched a pass and moved the chains. On another play, Thompson was lined up on the outside and got behind cornerback Corey Graham, but Flacco overshot him.

LB LERENTEE McCRAY*, Denver Broncos: Surprisingly not picked in April, McCray was immediately contacted by the Broncos, which saw a role for him with their franchise and even included a rarely-given signing bonus in his undrafted free agent contract. According to Denver’s team website, McCray has been earning plenty of attention during the first two weeks of training camp. “In the past two practices, he has broken up a pass, stuffed a run in the backfield and applied pressure to force [Peyton] Manning out of the pocket,” wrote Andrew Mason. McCray is currently listed as the third-team strong-side linebacker, though a left shoulder injury he suffered during practice on Thursday may slow his progress.

WR DAVID NELSON, Cleveland Browns: Having recovered from an ACL injury he suffered during the first game of the 2012 season, Nelson was cut by Buffalo in the offseason and immediately signed by Cleveland. Unfortunately for Nelson, who was activated from the physically unable to perform list on July 26, he may be having a setback. According to the The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Nelson felt some discomfort in his surgically-repaired right knee during practice on Thursday and did not return. Only time will tell if this is a cause for concern. He did also missed practice on Friday.

DT SHARRIF FLOYD*, Minnesota Vikings: There was a belief that Floyd could play nose tackle and be on the field alongside former Pro Bowler Kevin Williams at times, Vikings defensive coordinator Alan Williams is not planning on making that move this season. Instead, he will rotate the two players with Williams likely seeing 30-35 snaps per game. “One thing we do is rotate, so much that you need two [players at each position],” he said. Minnesota wants Floyd to remain at his natural position as a three-technique; many believed he was the best three-technique available in the draft.

* Rookie

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