Better or worse? Previewing Tennessee's defense in 2019

#1
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#1
https://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/t...r-or-worse-previewing-tennessee-defense-2019/

Run defense: Better
Despite the losses on the line, UT also should be better in run defense after finishing 9th in the SEC last year (155 yards per game allowed). The Vols will have fully adjusted to Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme by this season. That should help immensely.
Gooden will be key in run defense. He has to be able to hold his ground. He doesn’t have to lead the Vols in tackles for a loss, but he has to at least fight to a draw against the interior of the line of scrimmage. If he can do that, then other players will be free to make plays.

The Vols will be without Darrin Kirkland, Jr., who retired from football due to injuries. When healthy, Kirkland was a great playmaker. Incoming freshman Henry To’oto’o will be one of the most interesting players to watch in preseason camp.
It’s tough to determine just how good the Vols will be at defensive end when it comes to stopping the run. That could be the one area where inexperience hurts the Vols if there are assignment busts. UT’s linebackers should be very adept at stopping the run considering their athleticism. The Vols gave up 200+ yards rushing in 5 of their 8 SEC games, but also held Kentucky to just 77. They should improve on the former this season.

Passing defense: Better
The Vols ranked 8th in the SEC in pass defense last season. That’s not bad, but they should be significantly better this season. The Vols return their top three cornerbacks from 2018 and have a strong starting duo in Alontae Taylor and Bryce Thompson. They could develop into one of the better cornerback duos in the SEC. Baylen Buchanan is expected to be UT’s starting nickelback.Trevon Flowers and Nigel Warrior are expected to be the starters at safety. However, Jaylen McCollough will garner some playing time — if not a starting position.

Overall: Better

The Vols ranked 9th in total defense in the SEC last season. That was somewhat respectable considering UT’s talent shortcomings and having personnel that didn’t fit Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme.

The bigger problem was that they finished 12th in scoring defense, allowing 27.9 points per game.However, the Vols will be better than that this season. It’s reasonable to expect UT to finish close to the top 5 in total defense in 2019, and shaving even 5 points off its average would help an offense that also will be better but averaged only 22.8 points per game last season..

The only thing keeping us from being one of the better Ds in the SEC is depth. If we can avoid the injury bug Pruitt will have these kids swarming and attacking the ball. I also expect Chaney to play ball control so they can stay rested.
 
#4

WoodsmanVol

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#4
With this team, we will see strange sights and implausible wonders. They won't be boring as most games will be roller coasters of the will we, or won't we variety. Only at the end of the games will we know for sure. It's going to be a real Clairol moment each time except for maybe Bama.
 
#5

KBVol

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Simply, we just have to be better! I don't know how it could have been worse than last year.
Do what? Were you here in 2012 or 2017 when our defenses were among the very worst in the country? In 2012 we had the 110th ranked defense in the country, in 2017 it was 82nd. Last year it was 49th. Pretty simple math....it can get much worse than 49th in the country, like it was before.
 
#6

Devo182

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#6
https://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/t...r-or-worse-previewing-tennessee-defense-2019/

Run defense: Better
Despite the losses on the line, UT also should be better in run defense after finishing 9th in the SEC last year (155 yards per game allowed). The Vols will have fully adjusted to Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme by this season. That should help immensely.
Gooden will be key in run defense. He has to be able to hold his ground. He doesn’t have to lead the Vols in tackles for a loss, but he has to at least fight to a draw against the interior of the line of scrimmage. If he can do that, then other players will be free to make plays.

The Vols will be without Darrin Kirkland, Jr., who retired from football due to injuries. When healthy, Kirkland was a great playmaker. Incoming freshman Henry To’oto’o will be one of the most interesting players to watch in preseason camp.
It’s tough to determine just how good the Vols will be at defensive end when it comes to stopping the run. That could be the one area where inexperience hurts the Vols if there are assignment busts. UT’s linebackers should be very adept at stopping the run considering their athleticism. The Vols gave up 200+ yards rushing in 5 of their 8 SEC games, but also held Kentucky to just 77. They should improve on the former this season.

Passing defense: Better
The Vols ranked 8th in the SEC in pass defense last season. That’s not bad, but they should be significantly better this season. The Vols return their top three cornerbacks from 2018 and have a strong starting duo in Alontae Taylor and Bryce Thompson. They could develop into one of the better cornerback duos in the SEC. Baylen Buchanan is expected to be UT’s starting nickelback.Trevon Flowers and Nigel Warrior are expected to be the starters at safety. However, Jaylen McCollough will garner some playing time — if not a starting position.

Overall: Better

The Vols ranked 9th in total defense in the SEC last season. That was somewhat respectable considering UT’s talent shortcomings and having personnel that didn’t fit Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme.

The bigger problem was that they finished 12th in scoring defense, allowing 27.9 points per game.However, the Vols will be better than that this season. It’s reasonable to expect UT to finish close to the top 5 in total defense in 2019, and shaving even 5 points off its average would help an offense that also will be better but averaged only 22.8 points per game last season..

The only thing keeping us from being one of the better Ds in the SEC is depth. If we can avoid the injury bug Pruitt will have these kids swarming and attacking the ball. I also expect Chaney to play ball control so they can stay rested.
Fwiw that was our best run defense IN A DECADE. We just replaced our entire DL. Pass whatever SDS is smoking.
 
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#8

KBVol

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#8
https://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/t...r-or-worse-previewing-tennessee-defense-2019/

Run defense: Better
Despite the losses on the line, UT also should be better in run defense after finishing 9th in the SEC last year (155 yards per game allowed). The Vols will have fully adjusted to Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme by this season. That should help immensely.
Gooden will be key in run defense. He has to be able to hold his ground. He doesn’t have to lead the Vols in tackles for a loss, but he has to at least fight to a draw against the interior of the line of scrimmage. If he can do that, then other players will be free to make plays.

The Vols will be without Darrin Kirkland, Jr., who retired from football due to injuries. When healthy, Kirkland was a great playmaker. Incoming freshman Henry To’oto’o will be one of the most interesting players to watch in preseason camp.
It’s tough to determine just how good the Vols will be at defensive end when it comes to stopping the run. That could be the one area where inexperience hurts the Vols if there are assignment busts. UT’s linebackers should be very adept at stopping the run considering their athleticism. The Vols gave up 200+ yards rushing in 5 of their 8 SEC games, but also held Kentucky to just 77. They should improve on the former this season.

Passing defense: Better
The Vols ranked 8th in the SEC in pass defense last season. That’s not bad, but they should be significantly better this season. The Vols return their top three cornerbacks from 2018 and have a strong starting duo in Alontae Taylor and Bryce Thompson. They could develop into one of the better cornerback duos in the SEC. Baylen Buchanan is expected to be UT’s starting nickelback.Trevon Flowers and Nigel Warrior are expected to be the starters at safety. However, Jaylen McCollough will garner some playing time — if not a starting position.

Overall: Better

The Vols ranked 9th in total defense in the SEC last season. That was somewhat respectable considering UT’s talent shortcomings and having personnel that didn’t fit Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme.

The bigger problem was that they finished 12th in scoring defense, allowing 27.9 points per game.However, the Vols will be better than that this season. It’s reasonable to expect UT to finish close to the top 5 in total defense in 2019, and shaving even 5 points off its average would help an offense that also will be better but averaged only 22.8 points per game last season..

The only thing keeping us from being one of the better Ds in the SEC is depth. If we can avoid the injury bug Pruitt will have these kids swarming and attacking the ball. I also expect Chaney to play ball control so they can stay rested.
Can’t see how our run defense will be better. We weren’t very good last year but at least we had some older, experienced players. This year we have no proven players at DT. We’re all hoping that Gooden will take a big step forward because he flashed a couple of times last year. But besides him we got bupkis at DT. Gotta hope that we have some major surprises pop up and play out of their minds, guys that haven’t yet taken an SEC snap yet (Williams, Middleton, Simmons) or have only a handful of tackles in meaningless games on their resume (Butler, Mincey, Bennett).
 
#9

Devo182

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#9
Overall: Better

The Vols ranked 9th in total defense in the SEC last season. That was somewhat respectable considering UT’s talent shortcomings and having personnel that didn’t fit Pruitt’s 3-4 scheme.

I also expect Chaney to play ball control so they can stay rested.
Lol total defense. Terrible stat. Defended the 2nd fewest plays in the SEC.

Using a reasonable system - looked up S&P+ - we were 13th in the league.

As for "ball control" - that is a debunked old school theory. Just look at NFL billion dollar franchises that are finally angling toward pass-heavy offenses. Or the best CFB offenses, and teams, they are NOT conservative and slow. No elite CFB teams these days win 9-6 games for titles. Analytics have proven it makes no difference - after all, the time difference in an untempo vs slow tempo offense in a 3-and-out is a whopping THIRTY seconds...furthermore it rests the offense too (no shiz?) and the OL rotates less than the DL. If Chaney plays "ball control" we will lose even more than under Helton. The games we actually excelled last year we slung the dang rock. I think he will too.
 
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#10
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Can’t see how our run defense will be better. We weren’t very good last year but at least we had some older, experienced players. This year we have no proven players at DT. We’re all hoping that Gooden will take a big step forward because he flashed a couple of times last year. But besides him we got bupkis at DT. Gotta hope that we have some major surprises pop up and play out of their minds, guys that haven’t yet taken an SEC snap yet (Williams, Middleton, Simmons) or have only a handful of tackles in meaningless games on their resume (Butler, Mincey, Bennett).
Sounds like the author is chalking it up to more familiarity with Pruitt’s system. Not sure I buy that, but I think that was his reasoning.
 
#13
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#13
Lol total defense. Terrible stat. Defended the 2nd fewest plays in the SEC.

Using a reasonable system - looked up S&P+ - we were 13th in the league.

As for "ball control" - that is a debunked old school theory. Just look at NFL billion dollar franchises that are finally angling toward pass-heavy offenses. Or the best CFB offenses, and teams, they are NOT conservative and slow. No elite CFB teams these days win 9-6 games for titles. Analytics have proven it makes no difference - after all, the time difference in an untempo vs slow tempo offense in a 3-and-out is a whopping THIRTY seconds...furthermore it rests the offense too (no shiz?) and the OL rotates less than the DL. If Chaney plays "ball control" we will lose even more than under Helton. The games we actually excelled last year we slung the dang rock. I think he will too.
Dead on. Score first and often and make the other team one dimensional. That gives your defense an edge. We have lost two many games trying ball control. We need different. Why don’t we try scoring 35 per and see if our d is better.
 
#15

vavolfan6

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#15
This article seems like a complete fluff piece. I hope our defense takes a step forward, and I while think we will see individual players improve, as a whole, we will be relying on far too many new players. The article is higher on our D-Line, but none of those players are proven. You can hope all you want, but we lost some solid and experienced starters from that group.
 
#16

kbear01

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#16
Simply, we just have to be better! I don't know how it could have been worse than last year.
Look at the improvements from 17' to 18'. We were giving up 250+ rushing yards a game, and over 410 yards/game total offense. Over 5 yds per carry, in 17'. That dropped to 155 yds/game, and 4.2 per carry in 18'. We were more stout against the run, so our freshmen corners got exposed, and we gave up 223 yds/game passing. All of this with Butch's talent.
Let's run the numbers. That's a 40% improvement, against the run. With freshmen coming in at key spots, let's reduce that to 25% improvement this season. That is about 115 yards/game rushing. Bam! We are in the ball park! The passing D will improve, a lot, with talent returning. We'll only give them a 20% improvement, due to teams not being able to push us around up front, and being forced to throw the ball more often. That translates into 178 yds/game!! If we are only giving up approx 300 yds/game in offense, we are going to win games.
Of course, this all hinges on the offense not giving away points. Turnovers, etc. Also complimenting the defense by possessing the football, scoring points, burning clock, changing field position, etc.
Is this all a pipedream? Probably.
One thing not figured in is the improvements SEC opponents have made, and the fact that CJP has a year of film, on his tendencies, as a HC in the SEC.
 
#20

Backwards K

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#20
Where are they getting 8th best pass D from? Please don't say YPG, because total yard stats are just garbage. Realize we defended the 2nd least pass attempts in the entire league, so any total stats are terrrible to use.
It's only because teams were so successful running the ball against the Vols, they didn't have to pass.

Oh. As for the photo in the replay above this one. Fire damage is covered, flood damage isn't........unless you bought the very expensive flood policy and even then, it's not as comprehensive in coverage.
 
#21
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#21
Everything's going to be better; because the players have bought in, and have gotten in football shape---Bigger stronger and faster----Then there's the 10 or so Newcomers that will contribute. This team won't resemble what we saw last year. It'll be like clearing the fog off the windows.
 
#22

WoodsmanVol

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#22
It's only because teams were so successful running the ball against the Vols, they didn't have to pass.

Oh. As for the photo in the replay above this one. Fire damage is covered, flood damage isn't........unless you bought the very expensive flood policy and even then, it's not as comprehensive in coverage.
Insurance companies are filthy like that. House loan companies are just as bad. Do you know it is "standard" policy for them to lay claim to any and all mineral rights discovered on your property? If by chance oil, diamonds or other minerals of value are discovered on the land your purchased home and land it is on, it belongs to your loan company? This little tidbit is often buried in small print on one of the many pages you're "required" to sign to receive the loan. Often at closure. As a matter of fact, I do believe either early this year or late last year a Tennessee couple got evicted from their home because of this very thing. Can't recall whether it was precious stones or a rare small oil deposit. What happens if you refuse to sign such rights away? You won't get the loan. Filthy practice.
 
#23

LouderVol

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#23
Insurance companies are filthy like that. House loan companies are just as bad. Do you know it is "standard" policy for them to lay claim to any and all mineral rights discovered on your property? If by chance oil, diamonds or other minerals of value are discovered on the land your purchased home and land it is on, it belongs to your loan company? This little tidbit is often buried in small print on one of the many pages you're "required" to sign to receive the loan. Often at closure. As a matter of fact, I do believe either early this year or late last year a Tennessee couple got evicted from their home because of this very thing. Can't recall whether it was precious stones or a rare small oil deposit. What happens if you refuse to sign such rights away? You won't get the loan. Filthy practice.
thats got to stop when you pay off the loan right?
 
#25

OrangeSquid

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#25
It's only because teams were so successful running the ball against the Vols, they didn't have to pass.

Oh. As for the photo in the replay above this one. Fire damage is covered, flood damage isn't........unless you bought the very expensive flood policy and even then, it's not as comprehensive in coverage.
Doesn't mean the insurance company won't try and possibly succeed in claiming the fire was caused due to the flood damage. ;)
 

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