KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Plenty of talk about Tennessee defensive tackle Kahlil McKenzie already has taken place throughout the offseason.
The former 5-star prospect hasn’t lived up to the hype he had coming to the team in 2015.
McKenzie needs to take the leap forward now and help lead the defense.
McKenzie has played in 20 games in his two-year career with the Vols. He has recorded 36 tackles and 1 sack while battling injuries throughout.
In the lone game McKenzie started in his career, against Alabama in 2016, he suffered an injury to his pectoral muscle and missed the rest of the season.
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A slimmer — down to 320 pounds — McKenzie took the practice field Saturday to begin Tennessee’s fall camp.
McKenzie will feel the pressure to lead this year more than ever. In his first two years, the Vols had other leaders on the defense and defensive line.
All eyes will be on McKenzie to lead with defensive end Derek Barnett now in the NFL.
WNML’s Josh Ward discusses McKenzie’s role within the defense heading into the season. He also has audio from coach Butch Jones and assistants Mike Canales and Tommy Thigpen, and also offensive lineman Jashon Robertson.