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Jeremy Pruitt Presenting An Opportunity For Younger Players


Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt met with the media on Wednesday afternoon to discuss his football team after the loss to Alabama.

Jeremy Pruitt mentioned on the SEC teleconference that he wouldn’t be hiring a new DL coach until after the season. There has been a lot of speculation that Pruitt would look towards Bo Davis or Tosh Lupoi, who are both currently working in the NFL.

The Vols have been moving a few guys around to different positions during the week, hoping to find some depth within this team. Pruitt said that Key Lawrence is playing the STAR position at practice this week, looking to get him more involved on the defense. Lawrence, who played corner during Fall camp, is too much of a playmaker not to have him involved in some capacity.

Pruitt also disclosed that Bryce Thompson is dealing with a torn pectoral, but says it’s healing on its own. This explains why they tried to move some guys around in the secondary, as they try to shore up some gaps. This hasn’t been the best outings, especially from a group that had so many high expectations.

“It’s really kind of uncharacteristic of these guys because they have all played a lot of ball.”

Jeremy Pruitt

On the offensive line front, Pruitt said Wanya Morris wasn’t at 100% this past weekend for the Alabama game, which is why Jahmir Johnson got the nod at left tackle. Johnson has also been dealing with multiple injuries since the opening game in Columbia. So, having a few weeks to rest up will help get these guys ready to go for Arkansas.

It’s no secret the defensive line continues to have problems with the pass rush, as Jeremy Pruitt pointed out today.

“We must improve. We have to improve on the interior defensive line and the outside backers.”

The Vols also gave up too much in the open field, as Pruitt said they missed 23 tackles against Alabama. He also mentioned the Tide has around 97 yards rushing after contact. That’s not going to win you many ballgames against anybody.

During practice on Monday, it was more about getting the younger guys the opportunity to showcase their skills. Brian Maurer and Harrison Bailey took a majority of the snaps, according to Pruitt.

I was told that Bryson Eason has had himself a nice two days of practice. Tennessee also moved Pack Garland to ILB, just trying to build up depth for that group.

As for the OL, it was Jahmir, Trey, Brandon, Spraggins, and Cade working with the first group. This can obviously switch up, but they still ran with the same rotation as Saturday. At the wide receiver position, Jalin Hyatt, Velus Jones, and Josh Palmer ran with the one group at times. The staff is looking to get more out of this group.

The Vols will be back on the practice field Wednesday evening, so continue following FOX Sports Knoxville for the latest. Look for a comprehensive practice report sometime on Thursday.

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