FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — The number of Arkansas quarterbacks dropped from five to three this week, but the leader at the position hasn't changed — Brandon Allen is No. 1 for now.
The Razorbacks moved A.J. Derby to tight end and Damon Mitchell to wide receiver during practice this week. Both made catches during the team's second open scrimmage Saturday.
Derby, who started one game last season because of an injury to Allen and played the majority of another, caught an 8-yard scoring pass from Allen and dropped a would-be score in busted coverage Saturday. Mitchell caught a 28-yard screen pass, rushed twice for 10 yards and fielded punts.
"I brought A.J. in Monday and asked him to try tight end for two weeks and see where it goes," Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said. "He came out Tuesday and was incredible. Thursday was much of the same. Today when he dropped that pass, I think it was the first drop he has had in team situations.
"To say (Mitchell) has embraced a position change would not be correct. I think he's very adamant about staying at quarterback. I told him he could stay at quarterback if he wanted to, but I encouraged him to try wide receiver for two weeks and see where it goes."
Allen continued to lead the quarterback race this spring, completing 10 of 16 passes for 102 yards and two touchdowns during the scrimmage. He completed 6 of 10 passes in situational drills for three touchdowns but was intercepted twice.
Allen led the first offense to scores in two of their four drives during the non-situational portion of the scrimmage. His 8-yard pass to Derby capped a 13-play, 65-yard drive. His final pass of the day was a 20-yard touchdown to Kendrick Payne on a third-and-9.
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