Reasons for Pessimism in 2020

#1

volmandu

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#1
Well, there is a thread on optimism for 2020 so I might as well post the pessimism one.

The biggest concern I have for 2020 is we are not getting any better in few key positions to be better than 6-6 or 7-5.


a) Wide Receiver Playmakers: We will be losing a lot of starters and depth on WR. With starters Juan Jennings and Callaway gone and depth guys Byrd and Jordan Murphy (transfer) gone too we will primarily rely on Josh Palmer, Brandon Johnson, Remmel Keyton and Cedric Tillman. Now, Palmer is good to get open but drops a lot of passes. He has atleast dropped two easy TDs this season already. Keyton hasn't done much and Brandon Johnson has been quiet last year and last year. Deangilo Gibbs is a converted WR and Cedric Tillman is a project. Tennessee currently does not have immediate contributor kind of recruit committed for 2020. Passing game will be a big worry.

b) ILB Depth: With Bituli graduating and 3 ILBs leaving team (Ignot, Reid and Banks), depth at ILB will become a deep concern in 2020. So far we only have Henry T as a contributor at that position for 2020. May be Crouch will slide into inside position but that still leaves us with two guys. Aaron Beasly is new and unproven, Salon Page was overtaken by unproven Aaron Beasly so there we go. JJ Petersen is yet to show up and has been underachiever so far. To add to misery Tennessee does not have a highly touted commit for that position. Sewell Smalls is gone and Noah Swell is unlikely to come. We will have two good starting ILBs in Henry T and Crouch but with no depth we will be susceptible and suck in late games.

c) OLB/DE Playmakers : We already are really horrible at pass rush and will lose WGWTFA Taylor. Roman Harrison looks promising but behind that its almost no one of impact. Kevon Bennet and Deandre Johnson have been mostly average.. filler materials but nothing so far shown to rush QBs. Now, few good commits here with BJ Obijulari and some good targets (Hardy etc) but how ready they will be as freshman in SEC. We really do not have any pass rush and do not see it improving soon.

d) DL Quality: This could go either way. We have some good talent there on paper. With Solomon potentially coming back and all the guys from this year getting SEC experience we may get better but again just one injury to Gooden and we look lost this year. My guess is we will be a middle of the pack SEC team in terms of DL play. Not elite but much better than this year.

e) QB concerns: Now the best situation for us is Brian Maurer keeps his job, balls out and does good behind an improved O-line and rushing attack. However, what if Brian Maurer isn't the guy ? We just have small sample size. We could be looking at a new QB with bunch of new WRs in place with second game of the season against Oklahoma. Remember, JG was supposed to take that next step (or so was the team) but how badly that went for us ? What if Harrison Bailey bails out on us or what if he is not ready ? Again, Maurer can take make us middle of the pack (6-6 or 7-5) but nothing shown yet that he can be elite (I did love some flashes from him against GA though).

Few Goods:

O-line will definitely improve (or should atleast in theory) with such talent and not losing much. I expect running game to be better with Gray as sophomore and Chandler most likely returning behind a better line.
I expect secondary to be better and play like veterans. Some depth concerns but will be better next year over all.

Given all this, do you really expect us to do more than Bowling (7-5) in Jeremy Pruitt's third year ? Do you expect us to be competitive against rivals Georgia, Florida and Bama ?(atleast we consider them rivals but given how we have lost to Candy 6 out of 8 tries may be we should change the level) ..

Here is my bottom line:

2020 is a rebuild regardless of who is at helm. Would you be comfortable with a guy who is rebuilding again in year 3 or a new guy ?
 
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#3

VolRoger

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#3
Well, there is a thread on optimism for 2020 so I might as well post the pessimism one.

The biggest concern I have for 2020 is we are not getting any better in few key positions to be better than 6-6 or 7-5.


a) Wide Receiver Playmakers: We will be losing a lot of starters and depth on WR. With starters Juan Jennings and Callaway gone and depth guys Byrd and Jordan Murphy (transfer) gone too we will primarily rely on Josh Palmer, Brandon Johnson, Remmel Keyton and Cedric Tillman. Now, Palmer is good to get open but drops a lot of passes. He has atleast dropped to easy TDs this season already. Keyton hasn't done much and Brandon Johnson has been quiet last year and this. Deangilo Gibbs is a converted WR and Cedric Tillman is a project. Tennessee currently does not have immediately contributor kind of recruit committed for 2020. Passing game will be a big worry.

b) ILB Depth: With Bituli graduating and 3 ILBs leaving team (Ignot, Reid and Banks), depth at ILB will become a deep concern in 2020. So for we only have Henry T as a contributor at that position for 2020. May be Crouch will slide into inside position but that still leaves us with two guys. Aaron Beasly is new and unproven, Salon Page was overtaken by Aaron Beasly and Banks so there we go. JJ Petersen is yet to show up and has been underachiever so far. To add to misery Tennessee does not have a highly touted commit for that position. Savell Smalls is gone and Swell is unlikely to come. We will have two good starting ILBs in Henry T and Crouch but with no depth we will be susceptible and suck in late games.

c) OLB/DE Playmakers : We already are really horrible at pass rush and will lose WGWTFA Taylor. Roman Harrison looks promising but behind that its almost no one of impact. Kevon Bennet and Deandre Johnson have been mostly average.. filler materials but nothing so far shown to rush QBs. Now, few good commits here with BJ Obijulari and some good targets (Hardy etc) but how ready they will be as freshman in SEC. We really do not have any pass rush and do not see it improving soon.

d) DL Quality: This could go either way. We have some good talent there on paper. With Solomon potentially coming back and all the guys from this year getting SEC experience we may get better but again just one injury to Gooden and we look lost this year. My guess is we will be a middle of the pack SEC team in terms of DL play. Not elite but much better than this year.

e) QB concerns: Now the best situation for us is Brian Maurer keeps his job, balls out and does good behind an improved O-line and rushing attack. However, what if Brian Maurer isn't the guy ? We just have small sample size. We could be looking at a new QB with bunch of new WRs in place with second game of the season against Oklahoma. Remember, JG was supposed to take that next step (or so was the team) but how badly that went for us ? What if Harrison Bailey bails out on us or what if he is not ready ? Again, Maurer can take make us middle of the pack (6-6 or 7-5) but nothing shown yet that he can be elite (I did love some flashes from him against GA though).

Few Goods:

O-line will definitely improve (or should atleast in theory) with such talent and not losing much. I expect running game to be better with Gray as sophomore and Chandler most likely returning behind a better line.
I expect secondary to be better and play like veterans. Some depth concerns but will be better next year over all.

Given all this, do you really expect us to do more than Bowling (7-5) in Jeremy Pruitt's third year ? Do you expect us to be competitive against rivals Georgia, Florida and Bama ?(atleast we consider them rivals but given how we have lost to Candy 6 out of 8 tries may be we should change the level) ..

Here is my bottom line:

2020 is a rebuild regardless of who is at helm. Would you be comfortable with a guy who is rebuilding again in year 3 or a new guy ?
Neither sounds entertaining and fun to us fans. Fulmer said this would be a 4-5 year rebuild but I think we have all had hopes he was too pessimistic.
 
#4
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#4
c) OLB/DE Playmakers : We already are really horrible at pass rush and will lose WGWTFA Taylor.
Is Taylor really a critical loss? I think he has showed up to play, what, in 2 games in his career? Last year against UGA and UK. Other than that he has had a random sack or TFL here and there, but pretty much disappears.
 
#5

volmandu

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#5
Is Taylor really a critical loss? I think he has showed up to play, what, in 2 games in his career? Last year against UGA and UK. Other than that he has had a random sack or TFL here and there, but pretty much disappears.
But despite being bad, he is the best we have .. so imagine whats left behind ..
 
#13

BeardedVol

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#13
Neither sounds entertaining and fun to us fans. Fulmer said this would be a 4-5 year rebuild but I think we have all had hopes he was too pessimistic.
Is part of the 4-5 year rebuild process, to burn everything down in year 2 and start over? Cause that's what this season is shaping up like at the moment.

What do we expect in year 3 and year 4 if we end year 2 with a 3-9 or worse record? 4-8 for year 3 and 5-7 again for year 4? Do we when then expect 10-2 or better and playing for the SECCG in year 5? Is that reasonable?
 
#15

JoAllan

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#15
Based on your breakdown of the roster, not sure how it could be anything other than a rebuild... Unless, of course, you expect to hire a new coach that comes with a dozen proven SEC caliber players...
Did Tennessee beat Kentucky and Auburn last year?

If they did, then it’s “possible” Tennessee (with the roster they have) could beat “some” teams.....even teams who are “better” than Tennessee.

I’m not saying Tennessee will beat anyone. I’m just saying.....the myth, that Tennessee needs more and better players to win.....is a LIE, and one that Tennessee has disproven.

Surely Tennessee needs better players to win say 9 games or more, and to compete with Bama, Georgia, ect. But they do not need anything but execution, discipline, motivation, and to not make mistakes, to beat many teams.
 
#20

I40flyer

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#20
My word! 6-6 in year 3?! That's pathetic! Not saying your prediction is wrong, but please tell me a 6-6 record in your third year is completely unacceptable in your opinion?
Yes 6-6 in year three-is this what has become of Vol Football? And because with that dismal record, we'd be able to get a toilet bowl game, we'd be happy-something has to change-big change.
 
#21

99Vol

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#21
I would anticipate we take a step forward and UGA and Bama take a step back, even if ever so slightly. Not having Tua and Fromm at QB will mean a certain drop off at that position. Fromm looked like Rogers with all the impossible to cover back shoulder throws last week. I'm not as concerned about the loss of UT's receivers as the only game I can recall that they "took over" was Auburn last year, coming down with a lot of 50/50 balls. I would love to see our tight ends more involved. That play where Wood/Anderson caught the ball, I believe running behind the O line and turning up field was a great call. Looking for more easy passes where guys are in stride rather than screens are come backs... every position for the Vols save for Receiver should be improved next year... thoughts?
 
#24

99Vol

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#24
Barring injuries, next year should require more supplemental / support players than immediate impact players. We only lose Kennedy from O line, Taylor from D line, Bituli from Linebackers, and Warrior from DB's. It's a heck of a lot less attrition and glaring needs than last year or this year. I'm saying all of this with the perspective of 6 wins and a bowl game, not 9+ wins which would be an improvement. The most hype Butch got is when we returned to a bowl after time off. It really hyped the program until all of the 2017 injuries leading up to the A&M game... thoughts?
 
#25

malibuvol

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#25
Is part of the 4-5 year rebuild process, to burn everything down in year 2 and start over? Cause that's what this season is shaping up like at the moment.

What do we expect in year 3 and year 4 if we end year 2 with a 3-9 or worse record? 4-8 for year 3 and 5-7 again for year 4? Do we when then expect 10-2 or better and playing for the SECCG in year 5? Is that reasonable?
Year 2 is shaping up to be a burn down when your 2-year starting QB regresses instead of stepping up like we all had hoped. Also, we lost our entire DL from last year and this is a big deal when you have freshmen LB starting
 

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