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Jim Margraff said Johns Hopkins football players' lone assignment during bye week is "to rest"

No. 9 Johns Hopkins practiced Wednesday and Thursday before getting Friday and Saturday off. Coach Jim Margraff said the players have one task during their bye week before returning Sunday night.

"Their job right now is to heal and to rest," he said Thursday. "There's a famous Abraham Lincoln story about sharpening the axe with a guy cutting down a tree. You can go for five hours straight if you want, but if for every hour you take 10 minutes and sharpen your axe, you're going to be a lot better off. So right now, they're trying to sharpen their axes by resting a little bit and getting their bodies healed up."

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The bye could be especially beneficial for injured players such as senior cornerback Jimmy Holder (Loyola Blakefield), senior linebacker Hani Annabi and junior defensive back T.J. Reeves.

Holder started the first two games of the season for the Blue Jays (5-0 overall and 4-0 in the Centennial Conference), but hasn't played since. Annabi and Reeves have yet to make an appearance this fall.

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"We're just starting to get back to having some people show up," Margraff said. "They need the fundamentals more than anybody right now. They've missed literally a month of football. It's a long way back. But certainly they're guys that can add depth immediately and hopefully, they can get to a point where they're on the field contributing."

While the players can get away from football this weekend, the coaches will scout upcoming opponents and do some recruiting.

"We've got plenty to do," Margraff said. "Technically, the guys are off on Saturday. I'll probably be watching a college game someplace. My son [James, a junior at McDonogh] plays on Friday night, and I'll watch that game. So we'll have a little extra time this weekend, but we're not off by any means."

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