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Talking Points: Tennessee players in the NFL Draft

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Those rays of orange suggesting that daylight is just over the horizon? They're showing up in this year's NFL Draft a bit, too.

Kevin C. Cox

The NFL Draft starts tonight, and Mike Strange of GVX takes one last longing look at the Class of 2009 that mostly went up in smoke. The one player from that class who stayed at Tennessee and who might get selected this year? Zach Rogers. Yeah, Mike Edwards (off to Hawaii) could as well, and David Oku (still at Arkansas State) could next year. Bryce Brown somehow got there last year, and there are a handful of guys who will still be wearing orange this fall, but man has that class scattered to the four winds.

And yet Tennessee does have some skin in the game this go-round. Cordarrelle Patterson has endured some fairly harsh scrutiny about his mental preparedness, but is the only guy actually in New York and may be the first UT guy taken. My quick take on Patterson, by the way, is over at Dolphins blog The Phinsider. Bottom line, the guy's got exceptional talent with the ball in his hands. Justin Hunter, who we looked at yesterday, may in fact go ahead of Patterson. And Tyler Bray, who acknowledged to Jon Gruden that his game preparation is "seven or eight" on a ten-point scale, is also getting fair attention. Gruden did say that the guy is a "good" quarterback "when he rolls out of bed." The question is whether he has the desire and discipline to become great.

GVX has a couple of different little snippets on some of the other guys with orange roots who could get a little taste of the NFL this week, including Montori Hughes, Herman Lathers, Darrington Sentimore and others.

But back to college . . .

Here's a recording of Butch Jones' teleconference about the spring game, during which he says that Marlin Lane is "absolutely" on track to return to the team. The Vols appear to be competing for JUCO offensive lineman Jermaine Eluemunor. Rivals hasn't even ranked him, but does have offers from all over the place, including Alabama, Florida State, and USC. Something to remember when being tempted to weigh stars over other offers.