Good Morning, Everyone,
Just a few short Game Week notes to help keep everyone stoked for the Vol’s Thursday Game. Taking a look at Appy State and the Vols matchups with them. They are a Good Team and are very well coached by a talented and stable coaching staff. Their two best players are SEC Quality in their QB and RB. The QB is solid as a passer and can run well and the RB is their best player. They have 17 starters back just like the Vols.
I think that the Vols have a definite advantage in speed across the board and in depth. Appy State has some talented players but does not have the next level speed and depth.

The things to look for are not only “Individual Matchups” but also “Unit Matchups”. You have Appy State with 3 new starters on their OL versus a Vol DL that could be their best since the Mid 1990’s. This should and I believe will impact both their passing and running games productivity in a negative manner for the entire game. Our DL should be able to put significant pressure on both Appy State’s running and passing games. The speed and depth that the Vols have at DE should impact the effectiveness of their RB’s. The Vol LB’s and Nickle Back are also very effective against the run. The Appy State LB’s are solid. How well do our OL and TE’s get to them and how well do they hold up against our RB’s will determine that part of the game. Edges to the Vol OL/TE’s over Appy DL and LB’s and to the Vol DE/DT over Appy OL.

To add to the Appy State OL new starters issue, Appy State lost 3 of their top 4 WR’s after their Bowl Game. Their WR/QB situation reminds me a bit of the Vol’s situation the two last years with talented but not experienced WR’s playing due to injuries/suspensions. It is not a good recipe for a great passing game. Appy has a solid returning secondary to match up against the Vol WR’s. Our WR’s have more experience as a group and I believe more speed. The difference in the Vol Unit this Fall is that everyone is healthy and at full speed. Edge Vol DB’s over Appy WR’s.

Looking at all of this, depth becomes a key for both teams. Controlling the pace of the game is the goal for both coaching staffs. They want their offense on the field to wear down the other team’s defense and allow their defense to rest and adjust their play. In game adjustments are really important in Football and especially on the defense because you have to have the entire unit at all three levels to know what you want to change in your play plans. This must include not only the starters but also the reserves. I feel that the Vols have at WR and TE not only more talent and speed in their depth chart but a real advantage in experience which will make a real edge for the Vols as the game progresses. The matchup of Vol WR’s versus the Appy DB’s is not only a speed matchup issue but also a depth issue. I think the Vols have an advantage in quality talent and speed. This will create big plays on offense for the Vols in this game. Edges to the Vol RB/WR/TE’s over Appy LB/DB’s.

The Vol Special Teams are better in all areas in this game.

I think the Vols win this game and get better doing it. This is a quality opponent for a first game. They are not so over matched that this will not be game. They will not roll over a quit if they get behind because they will use this game just like their Clemson game last year to build their team for the rest of the season. Both teams will be better in their second games after Thursday’s matchup.

Let us take a look at the future for Tennessee from the performance of the commitments for next year’s class. Looking at the skill positions we saw the speed for these kids reflected in their tackles/ kick returns/ TD’s/ reception. I was really impressed by the performance of the DL.

commitments. Eric Crosby and BOTH the Gaddy twins had great games at DT with tackles/tackles for loss/sacks and getting their hands on the ball. It is great to go from no DT’s in a class to having three good ones coming in one class.
That’s what I think, what do you think?

Time to go! Have a great week and get ready for “FOOTBALL TIME IN TENNESSEE!”

Go Vols!

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