The Vols held their first practice of fall camp prior to the 2017 season on Saturday, July 29th. The team opened up with a long period of stretches, but then they broke into smaller groups and participated in positional drills for the rest of the afternoon.
Here are our notes and observations from the first day of the Vols’ fall camp.
- John Kelly was impressive as both a running back and receiver today. Kelly showed off his hands in quarterback-pass catcher drills and displayed his trademarked toughness in some of the running back drills as well.
- Freshman running back Ty Chandler may look small, but he has quick feet. Chandler is listed at 5-foot-11, 195 pounds on the official UT roster, which makes him larger than sophomore Carlin Fils-Aime (who’s listed at 5-foot-11, 183 pounds). Yet the freshman still looks smaller in weight than both Fils-Aime and junior John Kelly. Fellow freshman Tim Jordan filled out his jersey nicely and showed some good footwork as well.
- Marquez Callaway showed off his solid pass catching ability, and Latrell Williams, who redshirted last season, got to display the speed coaches raved about when he came in last year.
- Josh Smith appeared to be recovered from his surgery earlier this year, as he was with the receivers and didn’t look too hampered by any nagging symptoms.
The first day of fall camp didn’t provide much in the way of true analysis, as players weren’t in pads and couldn’t make too much contact. But John Kelly and Marquez Callaway in particular did stand out at their respective positions.
Jack Jones had a solid couple reps in the offensive line drills, and he needs a strong fall in order to try and nab a starting spot along the Vols’ experienced offensive line.
Tennessee young tight end group had a solid showing on the first day of fall camp. Ethan Wolf, of course, looked impressive hauling in some deeper passes during drills. But his brother, Eli, and freshman James Brown also looked good in limited time. Austin Pope made a few solid catches as well.