Vols Football: 4/7 Practice Notes


Defensive players huddle up for the Vols after a positional drill during Tuesday’s practice. PHOTO: Nathanael Rutherford

The Tennessee Volunteers practiced indoors for the first time this spring, seeking the confines of the indoor practice facility due to rain. The Vols opened up with the Circle of Life drill, making its debut this spring, then followed it up with some situational drills to test the mettle of both the defense and offense.

Running back Alvin Kamara was not at practice today because he was nursing a thigh bruise, per Butch Jones. He is expected back Thursday or Saturday. And despite rumors circulating about his return, offensive lineman Coleman Thomas was not back with the team.

Here are some notes from today’s practice:

  • The Circle of Life drill saw 8 one-on-one match-ups to start the practice. Dontavius Blair took on LaTroy Lewis, Brett Kendrick went up against Dimarya Mixon, Elliot Berry went against A.J. Branisel, Stephen Griffin took on Josh Malone, Charles Mosley went against Austin Sanders, Jack Jones went up against Shy Tuttle, Gavin Bryant took on Colton Jumper, and Dylan Wiesman took on “anyone who wants to go” as Butch Jones put it.
  • After the Circle of Life, the team shifted to the 4-yard line to do another one-on-one drill pitting a receiver against a defensive back. In the first match-up, Malik Foreman stopped Josh Malone from scoring. Ethan Wolf took on Jalen Reeves-Maybin and made a tip-toe grab for the score. Then Pig Howard went against Cam Sutton and scored in the back of the endzone.
  • Next up was some work in the trenches. Three linemen lined up, a center sandwiched between two guards, and a defensive lineman had to take them on to get to the quarterback. Dimarya Mixon, Shy Tuttle, and LaTroy Lewis all participated in this drill.
  • The final segment of situational work was a 2-point conversion play. The 1st team had two attempts and the 2nd team had two attempts. The 1st team scored on both of theirs, first on a Josh Dobbs pass to Von Pearson in the flat then on a Dobbs run. The 2nd team failed to score either time.


Offensive lineman Dontavius Blair was, once again, on the 2nd team offensive line. He got some work in the one-on-one drills today, and he didn’t look bad in any of them. But he’s clearly still not doing enough to start at left tackle.

Quinten Dormady is still taking reps as the primary quarterback on the 2nd team, and Josh Malone is still a 2nd team receiver as well. Malone had a good showing from what the media could see today, showing some good toughness and grit.

Joshua Dobbs has clearly worked on his mechanics in the offseason, as his long balls have more zip on them and appear to be more accurate. Jauan Jennings also has a strong arm, but his accuracy still needs some work.