AUBURN, Ala. — Five different members of Auburn's defense have missed practice at one point or another since fall camp began last week.
The most notable member of this quintet is Derrick Moncrief, who has put himself in position to start at boundary safety. Defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson said Moncrief had missed a full practice and half of another due to a combination of an illness and dehydration.
"He’s just now sort of getting back to normal, and he’s making steady progress," Johnson said following Thursday's practice. "That issue did set him back a little bit because during this heavy installation, you miss one practice, that’s a lot of reps on some new stuff that you have to try to go back and catch up on, and the train keeps on moving. And the day he comes back, we've already gone on to new things. Him being a new player, that set him back a little bit. But he’s making great progress.”
Another junior college transfer, Devaroe Lawrence, has missed two practices in addition to the Tigers' scrimmage on Wednesday. He returned to practice on Thursday, but was "a little bit gimpy," according to Johnson.
Though he finished the practice, Johnson said Lawrence — who's expected to work into the defensive tackle rotation this fall — was closely monitored.
"We kind of moderated his reps and watched his contact," Johnson said. "He ought to be ready to roll here pretty soon. They get a day off (Friday). I'd be surprised if he's not ready to go the next day."
Senior corner Trovon Reed, who sat out Tuesday's practice, has been dealing with a "nagging hamstring" injury, Johnson said. The coach also revealed that Star Justin Garrett "about 10-15 minutes" of Thursday's session for an undisclosed ailment.
"(It) wasn't serious," Johnson said.
Then there was Khari Harding. The weakside linebacker is battling a wrist injury, but was healthy enough to take part Thursday.
"He’s back out there full-speed now but he only got like nine plays in the scrimmage so I didn't get a good look at him," Johnson said.