Thursday Afternoon Practice Report

Tennessee went out to the practice field this afternoon to go over their gameplan for Saturday evening when the Razorbacks come calling. The Vols didn't do any physical drills on Thursday to prevent further injuries to the team. That is one aspect of the game that Vol coaches hope to keep in check on Saturday.

With injuries to starters Alex Walls, Karlton Neal, Kevin Simon and Cedric Houston, keeping players healthy is a forgone conclusion at this point. "We have gotten a little banged up," Coach Phillip Fulmer said. "I am not sure we are in any worse shape than anyone else in the country, but we will obviously not want to risk anything at this point." The four players named above all started vs. Rutgers and it is uncertain as to when any of those guys will be able to get back to action with their team.

Today in practice the Vols were very businesslike. There was no joking or ribbing in practice. Defensive coordinator John Chavis was still making minor adjustments to his high-powered defensive unit. Coach Chavis has tried to work all of his mainstream linebackers in at various points to keep the rotation fresh and make those guys realize how quick their time could come should another injury occur.

After an impressive three days playing wide receiver, James Banks came closer to earth this afternoon. Banks made some "rookie" mistakes while running with the first team offense early in practice. He dropped two slant passes in the middle of open field. Jabari Davis continues to run harder and harder everyday during practice. While keeping in mind that backs don't get tackled, J-Train has been very explosive off the ball this week. Gerald Riggs Jr. should also see playing time this week. Riggs looks like he could be one game away from being in full rotation with the first team offense.

As the Vols left the field, they were talking about watching more film from Arkansas' previous games later on this evening. If this is any indication of the players mindset, then Tennessee should fare just fine on Saturday night.

Today marked the end of the practice field work for the Vols for this week. They will have a walkthrough at Neyland Stadium tomorrow afternoon. The Vol Walk is slated to happen around 5:15-5:25 on Saturday afternoon.


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