QB Trickett shines in second scrimmage

April, 8, 2013
4/08/13
8:58
PM ET
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- If Jimbo Fisher is getting any closer to tabbing a starting quarterback, he's keeping his plans in house, but that didn't prevent him from giving a strong nod of approval for de facto No. 1 Clint Trickett after Monday's scrimmage.

[+] EnlargeClint Trickett
Mitch Stringer/USA TODAY SportsClint Trickett took another step Monday in his quest to claim the starting quarterback job.
"I thought Clint had a really good day," Fisher said following FSU's second scrimmage session of the spring. "Clint was very consistent in the things he did, and they made some plays around him."

Consistency has been the buzzword of the spring for Trickett, who leads the pack by a wide margin in experience in Fisher's offense. But if Trickett has done nothing to lose his hold on the top spot, he's at least starting to share the spotlight a bit with Jameis Winston.

Fisher said Trickett and Winston took the majority of the first-team reps Monday, and both had highlights. Winston had one pick in the red zone, but he also was able to lead the first-team offense down the field on several occasions with some impressive third-down conversions.

"He came right back [from the interception] and on third down just lit it up," Fisher said. "Made three or four just big-time throws."

It was a bit more of a mixed bag for Jacob Coker, who fumbled a snap and threw an interception, but Fisher said he, too, responded well to the early struggles to finish with a solid performance.

Stats for the scrimmage were not immediately made available.

As much as Trickett's consistent performance can turn heads, Fisher said, an up-and-down performance can be just as impressive if it ends on a high note.

"They made some mistakes, and that's when I want to see how those young guys do," Fisher said. "Them guys come right back out there."

If it sounds like Fisher is offering liberal praise for the breadth of his quarterback options, he insists it's all deserved. It's just that none of the praise has been so intense that a clear No. 1 has been established.

That will happen eventually, Fisher said, but he's still not putting any timetables on a decision.

"We'll know when it's time," he said. "Hopefully it'll stand out consistently who starts taking that job, and it'll be obvious. Right now, we're each growing and I love the competition."

Jernigan out: Defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan will miss the remainder of spring practice with a Grade 2 high ankle sprain, Fisher confirmed Monday.

Jernigan suffered the injury during Saturday's practice, rolling the ankle while at the bottom of a pile during live running drills.

"They'll cast him just to do it, and he'll be fine in three or four weeks," Fisher said. "That's the risk you take when you go live."

Fisher said he has insisted on live drills -- including cutting defenders at the line of scrimmage -- in order to get a better gauge on how both lines and the running backs are performing. At this point in the spring, it's a necessary evil.

"You create piles and people get hurt. That's the tough thing, but you can't run the football unless you cut," Fisher said. "That's what I had to see. The last three, four days we went that way, and now we'll cut it back a little bit."

In addition to Jernigan, tailback Devonta Freeman also sat out Monday's scrimmage with an ankle injury, while fellow tailback Mario Pender left early with an injury.

Blood and guts: The handful of bumps at bruises at this point are inevitable, but Fisher said he's thrilled to see the physicality his team played with Monday on both sides of the ball.

"It was a blood day," Fisher said. "It was physical, it was nasty, it's the way you're supposed to play football."

That meant a handful of skirmishes among opponents, some powerful thuds at the line of scrimmage and a visceral intensity all around.

“That was the biggest practice, scrimmage, everything since I’ve been here," said tailback James Wilder Jr., who took and inflicted some of the scrimmage's biggest blows. "Towards the end it was just crazy. I mean just straight hard-nosed, no pass plays, just straight hard-nosed up the middle. You’re going to knock somebody’s helmet off, or somebody’s going to knock your helmet off."

That left Fisher all smiles when it was over, even if there were a handful of casualties along the way.

"We're banged and bruised. We're battered to death right now," he said. "I like what I saw on both sides of the football. I really do."

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