The tight end will likely always be a big part of Bret Bielema's offense and halfway through the 2017 season four different ones already have receptions.
Cheyenne O'Grady has 14 receptions for 98 yards and a touchdown this season. He ranks third on the team in receptions. Austin Cantrell has added eight catches for 72 yards while Jeremy Patton has caught two and Will Gragg one. Patton is a junior while the others are all sophomores.
Patton was injured last week in practice and missed the Alabama game. However Bielema is expecting to have him back this week as well as outside linebacker Randy Ramsey. Ramsey missed the Alabama game as well. Bielema also provided some hope that senior quarterback Austin Allen can return for the Auburn game.
"Randy is a 100 percent," Bielema said. "Jeremy we didn't expect him to practice [Tuesday], but he went through the entire practice and had no signs of regression today so he's a 100 percent. Johnny Gibson as well practiced all day yesterday and is a full-go.
"Austin Allen continues to make great strides. He was on the side doing drop throws and different things that get you excited. He didn't practice, but I think the possibility of him playing on Saturday is real and I think it's important to him and everyone around him. So it will be fun to get him back out there."
Gibson, a junior, made his first start at left tackle against the Tide. Gibson has now started at right guard, right tackle as well as left tackle. Was it hard to make the transition from the right to left side?
"It was a position I played two years," Gibson said. "I played it in high school. Playing left tackle is just stuff I had been doing. Left tackle is the position I have played here for the longest since I have been here. I wasn't say it was too hard.
"To me I feel I'm a natural for the left side. Moving to the left side isn't hard thing to do. To me, the hardest thing to do is remember on a certain play you are at the tackle position, not the guard. I have played both since I have been here. Listening to Coach (Kurt) Anderson and doing what he tells me."
Other than junior Hjalte Froholdt at left guard, the other offensive starters against Alabama were new at that position. Senior Frank Ragnow moved to right guard from center, junior Zach Rogers started at center and junior Brian Wallace at right tackle. How did it go with Rogers since this was his first collegiate start?
"Zach is very smart," Gibson said. "He knows what everyone is supposed to do. So it wasn't a problem moving Frank to guard and Zach to center."
As far as quarterback it has been well noted that redshirt freshman Cole Kelley replaced Allen last week. Kelley most likely will be the quarterback this week, but even if Allen does return it's expected that Kelley will play. He feels like the Alabama game was a real learning experience.
"Yeah I did a few good things, but I did a lot of bad things," Kelley said. "Against teams like Auburn and Alabama, against defenses like that you can't do that. You have to be pretty much perfect. You can't make any mistakes. It's gonna be magnified. It's gonna be a turnover is what I'm saying. It has to just minimal."
Bielema has full confidence in Kelley if that is who he has to go with against Auburn.
"You know Cole's an exciting player," Bielema said. "When we recruited him out of high school, he has a certain DNA to him. He's a very aggressive, very confident, very likable. He's a guy that people can get around.
"We've used him at times in the course of the fall, even when Austin was healthy, to kind of bring in a spark, do some different things. He took his first chance and ran with it. Obviously we lost the game but I think anybody that watched it probably gained some respect for Cole Kelley and the way he does things."
Arkansas and Auburn will kickoff at 6:30 p.m. CT in Reynolds Razorback Stadium on Saturday night. The game will be televised on the SEC Network.