The Vols took to the practice field for the second practice of the 2017 spring camp Thursday afternoon.
The media was allowed three viewing periods of drills. Much of what we saw was the same as the first day, and most likely will be for the remainder of camp. Today, I spent the majority of time watching the quarterbacks.
QB coach Mike Canales was energetic once again. His energy seems to be having some positive effects because the QBs looked more engaged today than Tuesday. It wasn’t a surprise to see, but Jarrett Guarantano had the best mobility in footwork drills. However, Quinten Dormady showed off some mobility as well and looked better in pocket presence drills. As Butch said in his opening press conference, it will come down to consistency. I believe Dormady will get the starting job, but this Dormady/Guarantano race will be closer than I thought.
In period two, the receivers and quarterbacks worked together on some fade routes and streaks. I mainly focused on Guarantano’s side of the field. He looked impressive to say the least. His throws were accurate and had zip on them. He was also very vocal to the receivers if they didn’t finish a route or reel in a catch. Another surprise was freshman Will McBride. McBride (League City, TX) was a 3-star quarterback prospect and enrolled in January. He has a strong arm as well and was throwing good balls. I think McBride has potential but will definitely need a few years to develop. In terms of the receiving corps, Tyler Byrd and John Kelly were impressive with their quickness and hands.
I was also able to catch a glimpse of the defensive line and secondary doing strip drills. Brady Hoke was leading with secondary coach Charlton Warren assisting. Hoke is also another vocal coach and brings energy to the field. It may have just been a simple strip drill, but he was also taking the time to dissect details and technique, which is positive to see. This is a small side note, but Cam Sutton was in attendance observing Warren and the secondary.
The Vols will take the practice field again on Saturday, but it will be closed to media.