Arkansas went through its second practice of game week on Tuesday, continuing preparations for Rice on Saturday. Here are some notes and observations from the 15-minute portion of the workout open to reporters:
• Players who were in green no-contact tops: TE Blake Kern, DB Zach Zimos, S Jalen Catalon, DB Myles Slusher, DB Kevin Compton and DB Jermaine Hamilton-Jordan. Sam Pittman sounded optimistic that the players in green would be available this week, particularly the top-tier guys.
• Dominique Johnson, who has seen time this month at both running back and tight end, was a tight end with the No. 2 offense in the Fastball Start. But when position drills began, he worked with the tailbacks group. Sticking with that room, Trelon Smith looks like he’s running much better and with greater burst than last week. He has battled turf toe this preseason.
• Hayden Henry, who I did not see at practice on Monday, was back and wearing a standard defense jersey. He did not take part in position drills, though. He is listed as an OR this week with Bumper Pool to start at linebacker alongside Grant Morgan.
• Following the quick-start team work, Pittman got on his offensive line to “finish at the second level.” He stood and watched the group go through position drills for a couple of minutes to make sure his point got across in the players’ work.
• Here is a look at how the depth shook out for the No. 1 and 2 offense and defense in the Fastball Start:
No. 1 offense did not use a tight end, instead running with 4 receivers
Kendall Catalon (ran with the 1s and 2)
De’Vion Warren AND Jaquayln Crawford
John David White
Jalen St. John
Notes: Smith carried and got to the edge for what would appear to be a good gain before the play was blown dead. Jefferson threw incomplete over the middle intended for Warren. Jefferson then completed a ball to Morris on the left side for a gain of roughly 15 yards. Trey Knox was present. I would imagine the staff is allowing him to sit for this section of the workout to allow others to get reps.
Notes: Foucha made the best play we saw from the defense in the six-play segment. He broke up a Jefferson pass intended for Warren. Foucha, a New Orleans native, was named a team captain over the weekend, and I believe he could be in for a leap in production in his second year under Barry Odom, who not only leads the defense but the safeties bunch.
The only defensive lineman I didn’t see at practice was John Ridgeway. He is doubtful for the season opener. It also appeared the coaching staff was looking to get some other linemen, like Soli and Stewart, some work in hopes of further improving depth. It was good to see Gordon back on the field. He was not present on Monday.