3. Brandon Dowdell
Defensive Back; Junior
5’10” 195 lbs
An All-Southern Conference defensive back to start the season, Brandon Dowdell is another guy who could give Jarrett Guarantano trouble this year given all the mistakes Guarantano has made. And if that happens, Tennessee football could be in serious trouble in general when they face the Chattanooga Mocs on Saturday.
For the year, Dowdell has no defensive stats. But that’s a good thing for a defensive back. He’s keeping people from throwing his way, and that’s a big deal overall. Guarantano, given what he has done so far, may be the type of guy to actually throw his way, and if he’s going to do that, he needs to be careful.
Last year, Dowdell had three interceptions. He also found other ways to be effective, coming away with three tackles for a loss, nine passes defended, forced fumble and even half a sack. Simply put, he has been elite all the way around, and he’s going to continue to be that way as this season goes on. Teams are already showing themselves to be scared of him.
Given Guarantano’s struggles, this is a great chance for Dowdell to make a name for himself. On top of that, Dowdell is an elite returner. He returned his three interceptions last year for 67 yards. This year, he already has two punt returns for 56 yards, averaging 28 yards a punt return. So he’s an elite athlete in general who will likely give Jeremy Pruitt lots of trouble Saturday.