Some notes and observations from the open portion of practice on Tuesday afternoon:
Non-contact: As expected, there was a heavy presence of non-contact uniforms for the Vols on Tuesday. Linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin, receiver Jauan Jennings, safety Micah Abernathy, cornerback Marquill Osborne, defensive ends LaTroy Lewis and Austin Smith and running back Jalen Hurd were the players wearing the green, non-contact uniforms.
Some of those are newer injuries sustained over the weekend, though players such as Hurd and Jennings have been regulars in them throughout the course of the early season.
Hall returns: While a lot of the focus has been on all the players the Vols have lost to injury, there was the positive sight of Chance Hall on the practice field (as Butch Jones confirmed Monday) on Tuesday for the first time since he injured his knee in fall camp. Offensive tackle has been a spot the Vols have struggled at so far, and Hall could bring a lot of stability if he’s healthy and able to play at a high level against Florida.
Jones said on Monday that he’d need to see more from Hall in practice to know his exact status for the game. We’re no doctors, but he looked pretty good in the limited time we saw him Tuesday:
Looks like Chance Hall is ready to go https://t.co/YeM7wc316M
— Rocky Top Insider (@rockytopinsider) September 20, 2016
This and that:
• Special teams and ball security seemed to be huge points of emphasis in the brief time the media was at practice on Tuesday.
• Most of the Vols had on their Smokey gray helmets in practice. Butch Jones confirmed on Monday that the Vols will wear gray against the Gators on Saturday.
• Media was only allowed to watch one period of practice – one of the shortest allowed sessions ever under Jones. But with Florida closing all practice access to the media this week, it’s understandable that he would want limited coverage.
• There were at least a couple NFL scouts checking out practice.