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Football Practice Report: Aug. 21

Aug 21, 2021

Venue: Autzen Stadium
Format: Scrimmage

One week after the defense had a decisive early edge in Oregon's first preseason camp scrimmage, the Ducks demonstrated more balanced action start to finish in Saturday's second and final scrimmage of this camp.

The defense started well again Saturday, getting a three-and-out on the first series. But unlike a week earlier, the offense immediately bounced back, with Anthony Brown directing a drive that ended in Byron Cardwell rushing for a 10-yard touchdown.

The scrimmage was a seesaw battle from there, with subsequent rushing touchdowns by Cardwell and Cross Patton each followed by a stop from the defense.

"All in all just a very productive day," said UO coach Mario Cristobal, who called the offense's performance a "night and day difference" over the week before.

"They played clean, played fast and finished," he said.

As the scrimmage wore on, Mase Funa recovered a fumble and Bryan Addison had the first of the defense's three interceptions on the day.  The offense, meanwhile, found the end zone again with touchdown passes from Jay Butterfield to Spencer Curtis and Brown to Spencer Webb.

Butterfield and Ty Thompson each had touchdown passes to Dont'e Thornton in situational work, as all the quarterbacks continue to have bright spots and push for playing time this fall. Cristobal said the coaching staff is close to making a decision at the position for the start of the regular season.

"It's tough," he said. "Somebody's gonna be disappointed at the end. That part's not fun. But it is real."

Oregon's special teams also had bright spots Saturday. Henry Katleman and Camden Lewis each was perfect on one field-goal attempt, Katleman from 42 yards out and Lewis from 49. Tom Snee had a long punt after an offensive drive stalled deep in its own end of the field, and Mykael Wright looked explosive as a kick returner before making an interception on defense late in the scrimmage.

Other highlights: Seven McGee had an eye-popping rep early, juking a defender to avoid a tackle at the line, then stiff-arming another on his way to a 13-yard gain. … Terrance Ferguson had a 19-yard gain on which it took five defenders to drag him down, helping set up the first touchdown of the day. … Three different touchdown drives were kept alive by big plays from Kris Hutson on third down.

Other observations: Daymon David had one of the three interceptions on the day, on yet another tipped pass as the defense continues to capitalize on those situations. … Tight end DJ Johnson was in full pads with the rest of the roster after completing the NCAA acclimation period. … Phil Knight attended a portion of the scrimmage.

Post-practice interview:

Head coach Mario Cristobal