Arkansas Defense Seeing Green

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas cornerback Ramon Broadway knows Georgia's A.J. Green is talented.

The sophomore receiver's career numbers — 66 catches, 1,101 yards and nine touchdowns — speak for themselves. So does Green's size at 6-foot-4, 207 pounds, his speed, and overall athletic ability.

But Broadway sounded pretty confident about his own abilities as he and the Razorbacks (1-0, 0-0 in Southeastern Conference) prepare to face Green and the 23rd-ranked Bulldogs (1-1, 1-0) on Saturday.

"I don't care who he is," Broadway said after Wednesday's practice. "That guy, he's a great athlete, but we're going to come out and play ball.

"They've got a great team, but they've got to respect us. They've got to come into our house, so it doesn't matter who I'm lined up on. I'm going to have a real good game, so it doesn't really matter."

Broadway, in his second season as a starter at Arkansas, is part of a defense that was torched on the ground and through the air early last season.

However, the Razorbacks promise they are improved in their second season under defensive coordinator Willy Robinson and will get their first true chance to show it against the Bulldogs.

Green will be a big challenge for Arkansas' secondary, but Robinson said he isn't a one-man show. The Bulldogs have even more talent at receiver in Michael Moore Tavares King. Tight end Orson Charles is a threat catching the ball, too. Then there's running backs Richard Samuel, Carlton Thomas and Caleb King, who is poised to return to the field after missing the first two games with a hamstring injury.

Green is the team's star, though, filling a void left by departed quarterback Matthew Stafford, running back Knowshon Moreno and receiver Mohamed Massaquoi.

"A.J. is a guy that a lot of defenses week in and week out are going to try to control," Robinson said. "I don't think you can ever stop him, but you've got to control him."

So the onus will be on Broadway and junior college transfer Rudell Crim, who will make his second start at cornerback Saturday.

Crim, who received plenty of praise for his play in the season opener, said he's looking forward to the challenge. Both cornerbacks are expected to get ample time covering Green on Saturday night.

"A.J. Green is a great athlete," Crim said. "He has it all. He has the ability to go up and get the ball at the highest point. He tries to come off and block as hard as he can. I feel like personally I did great preparing for him, just practicing here with our receivers.

"You always want to be covering the top receivers. I want to take advantage of this moment and seize it."

So does Broadway, who Arkansas safety Matt Harris described as a pitbull earlier this week. Broadway said he spent time working with Arkansas' bigger receivers to prepare for Green's size and strength Saturday.

He said Green is "ahead of his time" because of what he's done on the field to this point of his career. But Broadway feels confident in the matchup Saturday.

"He definitely does a lot of things that a lot of veteran guys do," Broadway said. "But I like said, he hasn't done nothing else that I haven't seen.

"I've been playing for the last season, so A.J., he's going to be a good guy. But they've got to do a little bit more (than) the last two weeks to beat us."

Hawgs Daily Top Stories