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Auburn preseason camp notes: Second day provides glimpse of first team defense, quarterback rotation continues

Auburn linebacker T.J. Neal gets direction from position coach Travis Williams on the second day of training camp on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2016 at the university's athletic complex.
Auburn linebacker T.J. Neal gets direction from position coach Travis Williams on the second day of training camp on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2016 at the university's athletic complex. mniziolek@ledger-enquirer.com

Auburn coach Gus Malzahn stuck to his pledge to rotate quarterbacks with the first team.

Quarterback Jeremy Johnson spent Wednesday’s open viewing period taking snaps with the first team. He swapped places with Sean White on day two while John Franklin III remained with the threes.

Malzahn outlined his plan for the competition at his post-practice press conference Wednesday night.

“We're going to rotate each day who's going to be out there first,” Malzahn said. “We're going to have equal reps. We have a good plan for putting them in competitive situations every practice. We will chart everything. We're hoping we can name a guy sooner rather than later but we'll give everybody an equal shot.”

Thursday’s open viewing period didn’t provide any meaningful glimpse at the three-way competition, but it did shed some light on where the defensive depth chart stands at the start of camp.

The first and second team defense alternated walking through a series of plays off to one side of the indoor practice facility with the coaches using many of the first-year freshman defenders to simulate an opponent.

Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele and linebackers coach Travis Williams spent a good deal of time working with the linebackers on positioning out of a 4-2-5 scheme.

Tre’ Williams was in the same spot he was in the spring with the first team alongside Darrell Williams. Deshaun Davis and graduate transfer T.J. Neal anchored the second team defense.

The first team offensive line featured Marlon Davidson and Carl Lawson at opposite ends with Montravius Adams and Dontavius Russell in the middle. Defensive end Jeff Holland rotated in at defensive end.

There weren’t any surprises in how Auburn’s first team secondary lined up. Rudy Ford, Stephen Roberts and Nick Ruffin were the safeties. Carlton Davis took every rep at defensive back on one side while Joshua Hosley and Jamal Dean rotated on the other.

Auburn will practice again on Friday, but there will be no open viewing period.

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