FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas hasn’t had its starting running back since defeating Western Carolina 56-13 in the season opener due to a knee injury.

Sanders carried 15 times for 42 yards and a pair of touchdowns against the Catamounts. He also caught two passes for four yards. He didn’t play against Kent State and BYU. Sam Pittman was asked on Monday if Sanders’ injury status had changed?

“No, I mean really no is the answer,” Pittman said of an update. “I don’t know if he’s going to be able to play or not. I tell you in all honesty it’s probably too early to tell on that injury. We’re going to have him out there a little bit today and kind of see where he’s at. But to be honest with you the answer is probably no at this point. Not no he’s not going to play, but no we just don’t know.”

In Sanders’ absence, junior AJ Green has gotten the two starts. Green has carried 28 times for 190 yards and two touchdowns. He had nine carries for 86 yards and two touchdowns against BYU including a 55-yard run. Green had 63 yards on three carries after the first drive, but only got six carries the remainder of the game.

“Yeah, I mean, I think we went into the game thinking we were going to use all three of them,” Pittman said. “I think obviously if you feel like you have a hot hand you probably ought to use him a little bit more. Right now it seems like everything that we’re doing offensively seems hard. It doesn’t seem like there’s anything that’s coming easy to us.

“It’s … besides we did have some good completions and we had some long runs. We had more Saturday than we had in previous games. But yeah, I mean, I think we probably went in thinking he’d get double digits, maybe 12 or 13 reps and him coming out 9 might have been a little light for him.”

Redshirt sophomore Rashod Dubinion has carried 26 times for 96 yards and a touchdown. Dominique Johnson has added 12 carries for 36 yards. KJ Jefferson has 31 carries for 80 yards and a touchdown.

While the news on Sanders remains unchanged for now, Pittman did provide a bit of good news on the offensive line. Both Patrick Kutas and Andrew Chamblee, the two starting offensive tackles, left Saturday night’s game with injuries.

“They’re both fine,” Pittman said. “Chamblee’s was a cramp. He cramped. And then Kutas was a back. But I think they’re both fine.”

Devon Manuel hasn’t played much due an injury that has hampered him all season. Pittman provided an update on him as well.

“Man, I hope so. I hope so,” Pittman said when asked if Manuel could play this week. “He just hasn’t practiced well because he physically can’t. I hope so going back to Louisiana as well. We need him. Obviously, we had practiced Brady (Latham) out there a couple times, and he was the next best option we had. Just unfortunate when he had to move out there and all that, but he did as good of a job as he could do and he was the right guy to move out there. It’s just we need Dev back.”

Many are calling for changes on the offensive line, but nagging injuries have also hampered what was an already inexperienced group outside of Latham and Beaux Limmer.

“Well, the offensive line just has to play more consistent,” Pittman said. “On AJ’s run nobody touched him, you know what I mean. We just have to be more consistent. We probably need to move the pocket a little bit more. We can’t just stand back there and let people blitz-a-thon or bull us. Obviously we started chipping and things of that nature. But when you do that — you have to because of the bull we were getting.

“They were pretty good, I thought, defensive end wise.  But I don’t know if there’s a lot more than what we’re doing. Believe me we’re trying everything that we can to try to get the best guys out there that are going to play the best. We’ve been banged up and those things. But a lot of people get banged up. We just have to play better and play more consistent.”

Pittman provided more information on moving the pocket with Jefferson.

“It’s just like when I was here before with Dan,” Pittman said. “He likes all these combinations. If you move the pocket, what you do for the most part is you cut half the opportunity. You cut half the field off. You’re throwing to two receivers instead of four. You can flood it and get three out there as well. BYU actually ran a lot of floods, what I call flood routes. But if you can’t hold up, let’s say you can’t hold up on 3rd-and-8 they’ve got some really good players over there, you have to have something in the offense that’s going to make them slow down.

“Obviously we have the screen game, it hasn’t been very good. If we catch the ball the other night I think we’re going to make a lot of yards on the screens. So you have screens, you have draws, and you have opportunities to move it. All those we have, I’m not telling you we have them in our offense to move the pocket to get 10 yards, and those are the things we have to look at.”

Pittman was asked more detail on chipping on the offensive line.

“You can work your chips, work your chips better,” Pittman said. “You work with the tight end as well. That’s the easy one, because you can guarantee a chip. A back, if they blitz, you can’t, because he becomes blitz protection if his responsibility comes. I think we have to be prepared on both of those venues and, like I said before, I think we’ve got to move the pocket some too. I think we’ve got to get out of, ‘This is where KJ is going to be,’ in different situations. I think that’ll help, but we do 1-on-1s, we do indy and pass pro all the time. The other thing is that we can’t hold on to the ball as long as we have. He’s holding on because we’re not getting open, so that could help as well.”

Pittman isn’t going to do as much practicing in full pads this week in an effort to heal up some of the nagging injuries that have hampered this team all year. Pittman is hoping to get some players healthy and not have to do so much shuffling, particularly in the offensive line, during the game.

“It did and that period of two-minute, Kutas had went out first and then Chamblee went out with a cramp,” Pittman said. “Kutas came back. But we talked about that stuff on Saturday morning with what happens. I’m sure the coaches get irritated with me going ‘Okay what happens if this happens. Okay, he’s out, and he’s out. So, what happens?’ Because I want it to be able to click and say this is what we’re going to do in not a stressful situation and you just do it.

“The other thing is that for some reason we’ve had some hand issues. We’ve got three of them on the offensive line. You need your grip there. We’re going to go spiders today. I’m going to try and heal up some of that if we can. That was the plan whether we would have won or lost. I think you go through 25 days of physical preseason, and we’ve been really physical. Last week was our most physical practice. So, I’m going to try and heal them up just a little bit. You can still get a lot of work done in spiders, but that’s what we’re going to do.”

Arkansas and LSU will kickoff at 6 p.m. Saturday night in Baton Rouge.