Tennessee football roster: Projecting Vols’ 2019 2-deep depth chart

LEXINGTON, KY - OCTOBER 28: Daniel Bituli #35 and Nigel Warrior #18 of the Tennessee Volunteers celebrate a recovered fumble against the Kentucky Wildcats at Commonwealth Stadium on October 28, 2017 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
LEXINGTON, KY - OCTOBER 28: Daniel Bituli #35 and Nigel Warrior #18 of the Tennessee Volunteers celebrate a recovered fumble against the Kentucky Wildcats at Commonwealth Stadium on October 28, 2017 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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Nose Tackle

1. Savion Williams

Junior, 6’4″ 315 pounds

We now move to the defensive side of the ball, specifically the nose tackle position. And yes, our first projected starter in this group is a summer enrollee. Savion Williams is a four-star junior college transfer, though, who provides the immediate size necessary to play the nose tackle slot. He can be the cog in the middle Tennessee football never had last year, so we’re projecting he immediately gets into the rotation as a starter.

Defensive Tackle

2. Emmit Gooden

Senior, 6’3″ 302 pounds

Emmit Gooden is the one proven returning defensive tackle for the Vols. Jeremy Pruitt’s system has two defensive tackles up front in his 3-4 scheme, and Gooden is the other guy who will be starting at defensive tackle. He’s more of a regular tackle with his size, but he’s still a major impact player, so this should be his breakout season.

Backup Defensive Tackles

3. Kingston Harris

Redshirt Freshman, 6’3″ 312 pounds

Kingston Harris moved around on the offensive and defensive sides of the ball at different times since arriving on campus. But he practiced with the first-team defensive line at times in the spring, so it looks like the coaches will turn to him in the middle if there’s an injury.

4. Greg Emerson

Redshirt Freshman, 6’3″ 310 pounds

Greg Emerson still has a bright future on Rocky Top, but he took a redshirt last year like Kingston Harris and didn’t do anything to generate headlines this year. So he’ll still be a rotational guy because of his size. He just has to do more to stand out.

***NOTE: Michigan Wolverines transfer Aubrey Solomon’s eligibility status is still in question. If he’s allowed to play in 2019, he’ll be the starting nose tackle with Emmit Gooden as the other defensive tackle and Savion Williams the first guy off the bench. Kingston Harris will be fourth in the rotation, and Greg Emerson will fall off the two-deep rotation.