Vols' Mike Debord talks QB competition, Dobbs' leadership

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Headed into his fourth year as a starter for Tennessee, senior quarterback Joshua Dobbs totals 24 games played for Big Orange Country — 22 of those are games as a starter.

The signal-caller was only a true freshman when he was forced onto the field at in Oxford, Mississippi, after then-senior quarterback Justin Worley's season-ending injury. 

But if history were to repeat itself this fall, who would step up to the plate?

That subject remains a question mark headed into the 2016 season, and offensive coordinator Mike DeBord weighed in Thursday on the practice time for Dobbs' back-ups.

"I think that we here (at Tennessee) do a better job of developing the No. 2 and 3 guys because of all the reps that they do get." DeBord said. "Before, (at previous coaching positions) I felt like we put a lot of time in the one and didn't give the twos as much time I think. So I think here in (Tennessee's) program, it allows guys to develop and get experience that way, which is very important."

Competing to fill in as those No. 2 and 3 guys are sophomore Quinten Dormady, redshirt freshman Sheriron Jones and freshman Jarrett Guarantano.

Dormady played in six games last fall after enrolling in January 2015, giving him spring training practice time unlike Jones. To widen the gap further, Jones was forced to sit much of Spring 2016 with a leg injury. Guarantano enrolled in May.

As training camp unfolds, Dobbs continues to work with the three youngsters on their development. The senior "CEO" has observed immense effort from the underclassmen since the start of the summer practice on Aug. 1. 

“We’re watching film, talking to (coach) Butch (Jones), talking through reads, trying to find that extra completion, the right place to go with the ball, coverage recognition and everything," Dobbs said. "Just trying to get ahead on install, so when we step out to practice we have already gone over the day’s install a couple of days ago so they’re able to process it, think about it, and go out and really react to it once practice comes. I know it’s helped out Quinten, Sheriron and Jarrett — Quinten and Sheriron last camp and definitely Jarrett this camp and it’s definitely great to see him grow."

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