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PREP FOOTBALL: Rams take offseason at ‘full speed’
Newton squad has first ‘normal’ summer since pandemic
NHS Football
Newton head coach Camiel Grant Jr. and the Rams have been busy this offseason preparing for the 2022 season, which kicks off Aug. 18. - photo by Phillip B. Hubbard

COVINGTON, Ga. — It has been a busy offseason for the Newton Rams football team as they prepare for Friday Night Lights beginning in mid-August. From spring workouts to 7-on-7 padded camps, the Rams have done a plethora of things to get this year’s team ready for the 2022 season. 

And, with the last two offseasons being heavily affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, head coach Camiel Grant Jr. recognized how this year has been more “normal.” 

“This is the first offseason up to full speed,” Grant said. “And I think it shows in our numbers.” 

Among the high volume of players participating in the Rams’ voluntary summer workouts are many that have caught Grant’s attention with their progression and growth. 

Defensively, Damion Heggs, Jamarcus Presley and Kyle Veasley received admiration from their head coach. And, on the offensive side of the ball, Grant sung the praises of Anjavien Presley, Riley Scruggs, Jordan Nolley, Gabriel Williams, Elijah Turner and Marcus Calwise. 

Last season, though, the Rams were led by their defense and their performance all season long. And, even though that side of the ball graduated numerous players in May, Grant doesn’t foresee much drop off from the team’s defensive unit. 

And, with the promotion of Josh Skelton to defensive coordinator, Grant is excited to see how the defense performs. 

“Coach Skelton is doing a tremendous job of preparing the kids to be versatile,” Grant said. “And credit the kids for having the mental capacity as well as the physical ability to move around. And you’re going to see us do some things that may not be traditional but that’s because of the versatility of those guys.” 

Newton’s season kicks off on Thursday, Aug. 18 at Sharp Stadium when the Rams welcome Hapeville Charter in for a non-region contest.