KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Butch Jones told ESPN GameDay’s Samantha Ponder that Tennessee plans to be patient on offense in its game against Florida this afternoon at Neyland Stadium.
“We have to be patient (and play) very, very, very good defense. Anytime you hold your opponent to 53 yards of total offense that’s very very good,” Jones said, asked about the Gators’ No. 1-ranked defense and where he felt confident.
“So obviously we have to be patient and we have to take our shots, but again, they are going to make you earn every yard that you get.”
Tennessee kicks off at 3:30 p.m. ET today against Florida at Neyland Stadium looking to snap an 11-game losing streak in the series.
The 14th-ranked Vols (3-0) have won nine games in a row dating to last season entering today’s game with the 19th-ranked Gators (3-0).
Ponder asked Jones how he addresses the losing streak against Florida.
“We don’t really have to address it. That’s wasted time. We can’t control that. We have to control the things that we can control, and that’s our preparation and getting ready to play winning football,” Jones said.
As for facing Austin Appleby, Florida’s fifth-year graduate-transfer quarterback from Purdue, Jones said he prepares for him the same as any other quarterback.
“The thing with Austin or whoever plays quarterback for them today, they have great weapons around them,” Jones said. “They have a very strong physical offensive line, weapons on the perimeter, three running backs that can carry the football, so it’s more than just the quarterback.
“We have to play great team defense and complimentary football.”
Ponder also asked Jones about the challenges Tennessee has had on the offensive line.
“We have a group of guys that are very prideful they understand the standards and the expectations and the way we’re going to play offensive football,” Jones said. “I think getting Chance Hall back today will be helpful as well, but these are individuals that have continued to improve and get better, and I know they’re going to be ready to play.”