Tuesday Grid Update, 10/9

Arkansas enjoyed a "better" Tuesday workout as heavy work for Saturday's SEC battle with Auburn got under way. Darren McFadden was "a little banged up," but should be fine for the Tigers.

Arkansas practiced in full pads in preparation for this week's SEC game with Auburn. Coaches were pleased with the workout.

"We had a good day, we came out and worked on the game plan and our focus, intensity and concentration was very good," Arkansas coach Houston Nutt said.

"That's a good sign. It was much better than last week. Our players were into it."

The Hogs had a heavy dose of running to conclude the day. Coaches said spirit and attitude was high for the practice.

"This was a good day," said David Lee, offensive coordinator. "Last week, we didn't start the week very well and that carried into the game. It wasn't a good performance. You don't turn it on and turn it off. You play like you practice. Today was what you want to see.

"It was intense today, focused and the team looked good. We started the day with some walk throughs. They were excellent and that carried straight through to the rest of the day."

Wide receiver Robert Johnson, who missed last week with a sore ankle, practiced with good results on Tuesday.

"He had a good day," Lee said. "It was good to get him back."

Quarterback Casey Dick also thought Johnson had a good day.

"I thought Robert looked very good," Dick said. "It was good to get him back."

Lee said Dick was better on Tuesday than he played last week.

"That was not a good performance by Casey against (Chattanooga)," Lee said. "He had a rough day. He had five receivers open and didn't find them. If you have five open misses and you had 25 pass plays, that's not a good day. You can't miss five times."

It wasn't a good performance by the offensive line, either.

"We didn't block like we can," Nutt said. "We can do better than that. We have to. We missed assignments there."

Nate Garner, starting right tackle, didn't play much against UTC because of dehydration. He was fine Tuesday and made it through the heavy running to end the workout.

"I'm fine now," Garner said. "I'm OK now."

Nutt said, "We missed Nate. We moved Robert Felton to right tackle and went with DeMarcus Love at guard. We didn't have a good game there."

Wade Grayson started ahead of Mitch Petrus at left guard, although Petrus returned to that spot by the second possession of the second half.

"When Mitch came back, he had the intensity we were looking for," Nutt said. "That was the best he has played. We think Wade will be fine in time, but we will probably go back with Mitch right now."

Running backs coach Tim Horton didn't think it was one of Darren McFadden's better games, but he praised the work of Felix Jones and Petyon Hillis.

"Darren had the ball out away from his body several times in the game and you saw that he had a fumble," Horton said. "He can do better than that and he will. He was a little banged up today and sore, but he will be fine for the game."

Horton said Jones played 30 snaps and graded out "as a plus" in all of them.

"Felix played really well," Horton said. "Peyton Hillis was really good, too. Peyton had nine knockdowns and that's the most he's ever had. He really played well on third downs. He moved the chains three or four times and there were some of those where he caught it in front of the stakes and made a move to get the first down.

"I know Darren was disappointed in the way he played, but he'll come back better."

Hawgs Daily Top Stories