Dre Greenlaw full-go, playing 'pretty fast'

By: Jimmy Carter
Published: Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Arkansas linebacker Dre Greenlaw practices on Monday, Dec. 26, 2016, at Charlotte Latin High School in Charlotte, N.C.
Photo by Jason Ivester
Arkansas linebacker Dre Greenlaw practices on Monday, Dec. 26, 2016, at Charlotte Latin High School in Charlotte, N.C.

— There was a noticeable difference on Arkansas’ defense when junior Dre Greenlaw returned to practice without restrictions Monday.

“There were 21 guys operating at one speed and Dre operating as his speed. His speed was pretty fast, because he is fast and plays the game quickly but because he had fresh legs, too,” defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads said.

The 6-foot, 229-pound inside linebacker didn’t participate in the Razorbacks’ first scrimmage of fall practice Saturday and had been limited early in camp, partly as a precautionary measure as a result of his previous foot issues and partly because of an unrelated setback he suffered earlier this month.

Greenlaw’s return is a good sign for the defense and a linebacking corps which lacks much experience elsewhere. With the season opener against Florida A&M a little more than 3 weeks away, the coaching and training staffs are working together to proceed with a plan for how to handle Greenlaw’s workload, which will likely be on the lighter side compared to his teammates.

“During camp, you have a tendency to go more than game week,” coach Bret Bielema said. “Once you get in game week, Tuesday and Wednesday are tough days and then you have Monday, Wednesday and Friday to rest. That’s what we’ll kind of simulate.”

Greenlaw recorded 95 tackles as a true freshman in 2015 and led the Razorbacks in tackles last season before he broke his foot against Alabama in early October and missed the remainder of the regular season. He returned for the Belk Bowl, but suffered the same injury and missed spring practice as a result.

Rhoads didn’t know if Greenlaw would scrimmage Saturday.

“We’re taking a very smart approach to getting him prepared for the first game and the first season with his history of injuries and we want to make sure we put a healthy Dre Greenlaw on the field,” Rhoads said.

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