In my opinion Witten and Moore were two of the five best tight ends the Vols produced during the modern era (1964-2004). Here's a look at my complete top five:
5. MARK ADAMS: A three-year starter (1989-1990-1991), the 6-4, 245-pound Adams caught 52 career balls for 573 yards, including 24 for 217 yards as a senior. He combined with backup Von Reeves to give UT its most productive 1-2 punch ever at tight end.
4. REGGIE HARPER: A better receiver than blocker, this 6-2, 230-pounder started in '77, '78, '79 and '80. He led Tennessee in receptions as a freshman (30) and sophomore (31), made All-SEC as a junior, then struggled with injuries as a senior.
3. DUSTIN MOORE: A converted defensive end, this fleet-footed 6-3, 250-pounder probably had more talent than anyone ever to play tight end at Tennessee. Despite so-so hands, he made nine catches for 100 yards as freshman in 1995 and 18 for 201 as sophomore. He was dismissed from the team prior to his junior year, bringing a sad end to a potentially brilliant career.
2. AUSTIN DENNEY: He earned All-America honors after leading the 1966 Vols in scoring with 42 points on seven touchdown catches. Denney, who was an All-SEC selection as a junior in '65, went on to play five years in the NFL.
1. JASON WITTEN: He wore No. 1 because he wanted to be the next Leonard Little, but Witten's career as a UT defensive player was short-lived. Moved to tight end, he quickly found a home. His 125 receiving yards in the 2001 Citrus Bowl vs. Michigan were the most ever by a UT tight end. Witten caught 39 passes for 493 yards and 5 TDs in 2002, surpassing the CAREER numbers of most Vol tight ends Although he left for the NFL following his junior year, the 6-5, 265-pounder compiled 68 catches for 797 yards and 7 touchdowns during his Vol career. He has gone on to establish himself as one of the top young tight ends in the NFL.