Ahead of Saturday’s opener against Virginia, Tennessee has released its first depth chart of the season. Naturally, they didn’t answer many of our questions — they never do because frankly they don’t have to. But we did at least get some sort of snapshot of what to expect on Saturday.
This year’s depth chart, at least to start, is littered with the dreaded -or- designations. The offensive line battle remains unclear, and that may be the case throughout the start of the season. The only spots truly settled up front at at center and right guard, although Cooper Mays’ is still battling back from an injury.
Tennessee lists both Jabari Small and Jaylen Wright atop the running back depth chart, as expected. The Vols do have a clear top four at receiver — Bru McCoy, Ramel Keyton, Dont’e Thornton and Squirrel White.
Defensively, Tennessee shows a clear top five up front, with Omari Thomas, Tyler Baron and Omar Norman-Lott leading the way. Bryson Eason and Dominic Bailey will also see plenty of time.
The secondary — particularly the cornerback room — remains a bit of a crowded mess. If we had to guess, it’s likely going to be Kamal Hadden and Doneiko Slaughter getting the nod, but Gabe Jeudy-Lally and Warren Burrell are also listed as co-starters. Wesley Walker remains at safety after a strong finish to the season in that spot.
At returner, Dee Williams gets the nod once again on both the punt and kick teams. True freshman Cam Seldon is listed as the second kick returner, so perhaps that’s a way this staff can get him on the field early.
Check out the full chart below.