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Tennessee releases week one depth ahead of Bowling Green

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Syndication: The Knoxville News-Sentinel Brianna Paciorka/News Sentinel via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Game week is here, which means we get our first look at Tennessee’s depth chart. Joe Milton was named the starter by Josh Heupel on Monday morning, now we can see how the rest of the roster shapes up.

The full depth chart was released to media members during Heupel’s press conference.

Quick takes

  • No decision has been made at backup quarterback, with Harrison Bailey and Hendon Hooker getting the -OR- designation.
  • Offensively, things went by the book. Tiyon Evans and Jabari Small capture the top running back spots, with Jaylen Wright behind them. Velus Jones Jr., Jalin Hyatt, Javonta Payton and Cedric Tillman will form the top four at receiver, while Princeton Fant and Jacob Warren will handle starting duties at tight end.
  • Freshman Walker Merrill makes an appears fairly high on the receiver depth chart. We’ll see if he can find the field early on.
  • The offensive line — Wright, Carvin, Mays, Spraggins, Mays — has been locked in for a couple of weeks now.
  • On the defensive front, Elijah Simmons is listed as a starter, somewhat surprisingly, along with Ja’Quain Blakely. Caleb Tremblay, Da’Jon Terry and LaTrell Bumphus are the top reserves.
  • It’s interesting that Tyler Baron and Byron Young the the -OR- designation, with Blakely listed as the starter on the opposite side. Not sure I totally buy that one — we’d expect Young and Baron to see the field together plenty.
  • Theo Jackson will get the go at the STAR position with Doneiko Slaughter slating in behind him. Jackson will also handle punt returning duties.
  • Freshman defensive back Christian Charles, who has made quite a bit of noise in camp, is listed as a second team safety.
  • Juwan Mitchell and Jeremy Banks are your starting linebackers, as expected. Aaron Beasley and Solon Page appear to be next in the pecking order.