Trey Smith missed spring ball and has been limited all offseason due to injury. But he’s now back and ready to go. The freshman All-American is also already the most proven guy on Tennessee football’s defensive line, and you can tell that Jeremy Pruitt has high expectations for him too.
There’s a reason Smith was the only Vol who made preseason All-SEC and was named to the Outland Trophy Watch List. In the midst of a horrible 2017, Smith was the bright spot on offense, emerging as a leader and an amazing blocker.
With so many changes on the offensive line, having a sure starter there is unexpected. But that’s how good Smith is. He’s the only guy in this post who actually has a secure starting spot due to skill and skill alone.
The only reason Smith is not higher on this list is due to the fact that we don’t know how much the offseason issues will hold him up. But it’s clear that all things being equal, he’s Tennessee football’s best offensive lineman. Drew Richmond has something to prove, and Chance Hall is recovering from injury. Nobody else has demonstrated much for the Vols just yet.
Simply put, Smith is the only guy up there with nothing to prove. We know how great he is already. Add in his versatility, which Pruitt talked about in his opening press conference, and it’s hard to ignore the fact that he will clearly be a staple on the line once again.