Aaron Donald is still just getting his feet wet with the St. Louis Rams, but if his start is any indication of his pro career, opposing offensive linemen should look out.
Donald's dominance officially started in OTAs in June. Count Rams offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer impressed:
"Aaron Donald has my vote for rookie of the year already," Schottenheimer said.
Keep in mind, while Schottenheimer is of course a member of the Rams' staff, he's an offensive coach. He'd apparently seen enough of Donald blowing up plays in 11-on-11 drills, though, to give him that kind of praise already.
Things don't seem to be slowing down much with Donald in training camp now, either. Camp opened up on Friday for the Rams, but Wednesday and Thursday offered a rookie precursor where Donald was again being Donald:
To a large degree, Donald was unblockable during one-on-one pass-blocking drills Wednesday.
ESPN also took note of his play during the rookie practices:
During a handful of snaps in Wednesday's workout, Donald was so quick off the ball that there were moments it looked like some of the rookie linemen were going at walk-through speed while he was going at full speed. Only No. 2 overall pick Greg Robinson seemed to have any success consistently getting his hands on Donald, though even that didn't slow him down much.
Donald dominating against rookies might not turn too many heads of doubters just yet, but handling Robinson pretty well is just impressive. He's only a rookie as well, but as the No. 2 overall pick, was the highest drafted offensive lineman.
Things didn't slow down for him once camp opened for everyone, either. A writer for SportsonEarth.com, an offshoot of USA Today, Mike Tanier, recently this to say at a Rams practice on Friday:
#Rams camp thought 2: Aaron Donald has "holy crap" initial quickness.— Michael Tanier (@MikeTanier) July 25, 2014
ESPN's Adam Schefter also got in the act on Saturday:
Just got this text from Rams' practice: "Aaron Donald is unreal."— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 26, 2014
And this, from a spectator, just sounds downright mean:
They have Aaron Donald in a 1-on-1 drill with a 7th-rounder. Donald flipped him & dragged him for a few inches #ramscamp— Jamal Collier (@JCollierD) July 25, 2014
Look, I don't watch much NFL preseason stuff, but I'll definitely be tuning into a Rams game or two if I can.
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