"We got quite a bit of rain," offensive coordinator Paul Petrino said. "I thought our guys looked good coming in and out of their routes. They had their pads low and I don't think the rain bothered them at all. We may get rain sometime this year so it was good to practice in it tonight.
"We threw and caught the ball well in the rain. You can always improve your execution, but our intensity and the way we practiced was very good."
One of the many bright spots in practice Tuesday was running back Michael Smith. Petrino said Smith was "flying" in practice. He called the senior running back "fast and fresh" and said it was exciting to watch him practice. Petrino said, "He had a great practice tonight."
"I do feel fresh," Smith said. "I think we've done some things to get our legs fresh. We had a couple of days off this weekend and that helped everyone. I saw that it really helped the offensive line. I think they were fresher and they were really intense. You see that they are much fresher.
"We had that time off, but we probably cut a couple of practices a little shorter last week to make sure to get our legs fresh. I think that has helped us."
The Hogs appear to be healthy. Working in full pads are offensive guard Grant Cook, defensive end Demario Ambrose and safety Elton Ford. All were bothered by ankle injuries in the last couple of weeks, but should be fine for Georgia. Wide receiver Lucas Miller also practiced in some drills, Petrino said, but he's probably still one or two weeks away from playing after suffering a broken collarbone in preseason.
Among the things that coaches and players have commented on in recent days is improved play by the offensive line since the opener.
"I think they've worked very hard since our first game," Petrino said. "They are doing things better together. They are making strides in protection and the way they work the run scheme. I think you've seen them improve a lot."
Offensive guard Mitch Petrus said some of that is getting more knowledge of the defense they will face this week.
"We've had a lot of practice against Georgia," Petrus said. "We've had a lot of meeting time. You see what they do, what you may need to do against certain schemes and study a little more with an open week. That's what's happened. We are just more familiar and have more knowledge."
The Hogs have worked hard on their goal line execution. That was a strength for Georgia in their victory over South Carolina last week.
"We always work hard in practice on what we do on the goal line," Petrino said. "Georgia has some things they do on the goal line, an eight-zebra front. It's definitely some goal line zone stuff. We have a plan on how to attack it. We've worked on Georgia quite a bit in fall camp. Our players are excited."
Petrino was asked about quarterback performance in practice. He said they continue to improve with "more repetitions." Nothing was revealed about the possibility of Tyler Wilson rotating with Ryan Mallett in the first half.
However, Wilson, when asked about that situation, said, "Apparently, we're going to work like we did last week and it will depend on the game situation, I think. I think we'll both be prepared and we're just going in with the mindset that we can be in the game at any point."
Offensive line coach Mike Summers is impressed by Georgia's defensive front.
"They are big athletic defensive front, like we face every week," Summers said. "They do a great job of fighting and getting to the football. They don't stay blocked. They keep blockers off their linebackers and help them stay clean and make tackles. Our job is to get to them, get some push and keep them covered up."
The Hogs had a clean slate, no sacks in the opener.
"I thought (the offensive line) did a good job, putting themselves in position to be successful," Summers said. "We know we're going to face stronger rushes as the season goes on and be tested more than we were tested. So i feel like that's still a work in progress. They got an 'A' on their first test."
Running backs coach Tim Horton felt his group showed much improvement from this time last season.
"We had four sacks last year against Western Illinois, and if you go back and look at where they came from, it was the running backs," Horton said. "So we were much better in this game. But we are going to see a lot more speed, better players this week. We know we have a challenge."
Smith said the emphasis is on improving pass protection, but to hit their tracks on the running plays more consistently.
"Coach (Bobby) Petrino got us a lot today about that, not hitting our tracks exactly the same," Smith said. "What you want is for every back to hit the same spots. That helps the quarterback on the handoffs. If the backs are different, it makes it tough on the quarterback. And, you have to hit the holes the same way. If we are going to play this many backs, we have to be more consistent as a group, do some things the same."
Smith is excited to move to SEC play. He was not pleased to be a spectator mostly in the opener. He received only four carries in the run game.
"That was tough, I admit that," he said. "So it is (a little bit of a debut) for me. It is a little. I just have to make sure that the carries I do get in this game, I take advantage of and I make something happen."