2. He's earned the respect of his teammates, hence his selection as a captain.
3. He's proved he can win, guiding the Vols to 35 points per game and three wins in his four starts last fall.
4. He's a fifth-year senior who has shown the maturity, savvy and poise to handle pressure.
On the flip side, Clausen has some negatives. For instance:
1. He lacks the arm strength to make some of the throws in UT's playbook.
2. He is not particularly nimble.
3. He throws a lot of short passes that do not stretch a defense vertically. This could enable opposing defenses to crowd the line of scrimmage and overplay the run.
Clausen won't dazzle anyone with his physical skills. Even so, a guy who can complete 80 percent of his passes – even in scrimmage action -- deserves serious consideration for the starting quarterback job.