Practice notes and observations - Oct. 22

Arkansas practiced outdoors as it continued preparations for No. 1 Alabama on Saturday. Here are a few notes from the 20-minute open viewing window:

  • As we were walking off of the practice fields today, John Stephen Jones was taking reps with the first-team offense. He was receiving snaps with Rakeem Boyd alongside him in the backfield, and Trey Knox and Mike Woods at receiver. Jones was the first Arkansas player on the field when things got going today. He sprinted to the far end of the turf field where quarterbacks warm up.

  • In terms of the quarterbacks today, Ben Hicks and Nick Starkel did not look particularly sharp. The wind was blowing pretty good, but they were fairly consistent in throwing behind receivers. Hicks had one pass sail over De’Vion Warren’s head and the two had a verbal exchange. Moments later, receivers coach Justin Stepp stepped in front of Warren in an attempt to calm him down. Trey Knox, though, had the catch of the day, reeling in a pass from Starkel with only his left hand.

  • Boyd, who played a very physical game Saturday against Auburn and totaled 65 yards on 15 touches (carries + receptions), was the only Razorbacks player in green on Tuesday. He went through essentially all position group drills and caught passes out of the backfield against air. Boyd entered last weekend as the SEC leader in rushing. He is now third in the league at 656 yards, trailing Vanderbilt’s Ke’Shawn Vaughn and Georgia’s D’Andre Swift.

  • On the injury front, starting left guard Austin Capps was the only player absent from Tuesday’s workout. Chad Morris said Monday at his weekly press conference that Capps is in concussion protocol. He was replaced in the second half of the Auburn game by Kirby Adcock. Left tackle Colton Jackson was present and active with his group. He has battled a concussion, foot problems and, most recently, a back injury this season.

  • Running back Chase Hayden, who has not played in the team’s last three games, was present at practice and working with his position group. Morris has not commented on Hayden’s status since last Monday when he said the staff will continue to re-evaluate him. The junior has played in four games this season.

  • Defensively, freshman end Mataio Soli, who has an undisclosed injury, was full go Tuesday. He exited the field in some pain Saturday and fell to his knees on the Arkansas sideline. He is still practicing without the bulky club on his right hand.

  • Noah Gatlin, the offensive lineman who in the team’s first practice in fall camp tore his ACL, was walking around the turf field with a trainer with a brace on the injured knee. While practice was taking place, Gatlin was doing wall sits against a padded wall facing the field.

Absent
OL Austin Capps (concussion protocol)
WR Jordan Jones (high ankle sprain)
OL Noah Gatlin (torn ACL; out for season)
WR Deon Stewart (torn ACL; out for season)
DE Dorian Gerald (strained artery in neck; out for season)

Thanks for that, Scottie. Actually not all bad news.

LOVE that Noah Gatlin is on the field again. so glad for that young man.

Also JSJ getting 1st team reps. sounds good to me. We’ve already covered this, but I would really have liked him to have had some reps vs Aubarn.

Also really surprises me that more guys weren’t out with injury after playing that physical of a game.

GHG

Gatlin was just in a hoodie and shorts, but yeah, it was good to see him around.

Yes. Let’s not count out JSJ. While he may not have some measurables, he’s a gamer and a winner. I’m not saying he’ll be any kind of savior but it would not surprise me for him to open some eyes. Sure hope he gets a chance.

Pretty confident JSJ will get some snaps going forward.

Freudian slip? JSJ.

Yes it was.

haha we’ll be typing SJS for a long, long time

I don’t recall whether it was spring or fall camp, but I remember the coach saying that JSJ was the most consistent QB in moving the ball and scoring. Right now, we may be putting up decent stats, but our red zone scoring is abysmal. JSJ certainly can’t do worse than Hicks and Starkel as far as results, so I say give him a shot. Same with Jefferson. Let’s see what he can do. I also read that the coaches didn’t want to throw the young guys into the Auburn game because they would be throwing them in against one of the best D-Lines in the nation. I hope they noticed that Auburn was playing a true freshman at QB.

You said that JSJ was taking first snaps, but you didn’t report how he looked. Compare to the other two QB’s?

Like Tuesday, he was working with the first team as we were leaving practice. We didn’t get to watch him.