KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee’s quarterbacks got off to a hot start Tuesday afternoon, their deep balls sailing 40 yards through 82-degree temperatures to sideline streaking receivers.
“Command it!” New Vols assistant coach Mike Canales instructed, “Location, every time, can’t waste a throw.”
Indeed, Tennessee can’t waste a minute or a repetition in trying to replace 3-year starter Josh Dobbs, last season’s SEC touchdown and pass efficiency leader.
Tennessee Football QB Overview
Coach Butch Jones has valuable experience managing quarterback battles, and this one won’t be any different in the sense that patience and fairness will be key elements.
Rising junior Quinten Dormady began spring at the front of the repetition line, but Jones made it clear that there is no depth chart at this point — only organizational charts.
“That’s just who gets in line first,” Jones said. “The position is open. All of the positions are open.”
That means redshirt sophomore Sheriron Jones is in contention, too, and Jones looked athletic and accurate in the opening drills on Tuesday.
Tennessee Football QB By The Numbers
Dobbs numbers will be difficult to replicate, to the point that whoever wins the starting job shouldn’t even concern himself with it.
Dobbs’ 3,777 yards of total offense were just 12 shy of the school record set by Peyton Manning in 1997, and the 2016 UT offense set the program’s single-season record for total yards and points.
Tennessee Football QB Moving Forward
Many believe the Vols’ QB battle will come down to Dormady and Guarantano, and there’s a good chance both will see action in September and possible even both get starts.
Dormady offers a more prototypical look, a 6-foot-4, 225-pounder with a strong arm and decent mobility.
Guarantano, the nation’s No. 1-rated dual-threat QB in the 2016 class, is the flashier of the two and possesses great mobility in a 6-4, 211-pound frame.
Jones provides another good option, a 6-2, 208-pounder with an accurate arm and decent mobility.
Tennessee Football QB Standout Performer
Again, it has the makings of a two-horse race with Dormady and Guarantano, and it could very well come down to which quarterback fits the personnel better.
First-year offensive coordinator Larry Scott could lean heavier on the run game with a veteran front returning and only on veteran coming back in the form of Jajuan Jennings.
But what, exactly, that would mean is anyone’s guess.
More of a Pro Style offense would seem to favor Dormady, while a read option oriented attack would better take advantage of Guarantano’s dual-threat skill set.
It has yet to be determined by the coaching staff.
Projected Depth Chart:
Jarrett Guarantano (6-4, 211, RS Fr.)
Quinten Dormady (6-4, 225, Jr.)
Sheriron Jones (6-2, 208, RS. So.)
Zac Jancek (6-4, 214, RS So.)
Will McBride (6-1, 195, Tr. Fr.)