PFF Grades: Vanderbilt at Tennessee

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    Photo By Andrew Ferguson/Tennessee Athletics

    Tennessee capped off its regular season with a 45-21 victory over Vanderbilt, earning its third straight win over the Commodores and seventh win of the season.

    Theo Jackson got the Vols going with a first quarter pick six and Tennessee’s running game flourished with with a 285 yard game.

    If you need a reminder on how Pro Football Focus works, read the opening of the Bowling Green grades.

    Let’s see how the Vols graded out.

    Elite grade = 90-100, All-Conference = 85-89, Starter = 70-84, Backup = 60-69, Replaceable = 60 >

    Offensive Grades (minimum 18 plays — 30% of offensive snaps)

    OT Jeremiah Crawford — 89.3 (24 plays)

    RB Jaylen Wright — 81.1 (24 plays)

    C Cooper Mays — 76.1 (60 plays)

    OG Jerome Carvin — 75.9 (60 plays)

    WR Cedric Tillman — 71.7 (50 plays)

    TE Princeton Fant — 70.5 (30 plays)

    RT Dayne Davis — 69.0 (36 plays)

    RB Jabari Small — 68.8 (36 plays)

    WR Velus Jones Jr. — 67.5 (47 plays)

    QB Hendon Hooker — 62.2 (50 plays)

    OT Darnell Wright — 58.4 (60 plays)

    TE Jacob Warren — 52.2 (31 plays)

    OG Ollie Lane — 51.1 (43 plays)

    WR JaVonta Payton — 50.5 (57 plays)

    Josh Heupel praised Jeremiah Crawford postgame for the growth the junior college transfer has made since arriving on campus this summer. He proved it Saturday turning in a strong performance.

    It was a strong day for a pair of young Tennessee contributors as sophomore center Cade Mays and freshman running back Jaylen Wright earned their best grades while playing significant snaps all season.

    Even in one of Hendon Hooker’s worst performance of the season he earned a decent grade. It’s hard to express just how important he was to Tennessee’s offense.

    Defensive Grades (minimum of 22 plays — 30% of defensive snaps)

    STAR Theo Jackson — 89.7 (78 plays)

    LB Aaron Beasley — 72.6 (67 plays)

    CB Alontae Taylor — 70.9 (78 plays)

    DT Omari Thomas — 69.8 (32 plays)

    DE Ja’Quain Blakely — 68.5 (34 plays)

    DE Caleb Tremblay — 67.6 (37 plays)

    DT Matthew Butler — 67.1 (57 plays)

    DT Da’Jon Terry — 67.0 (28 plays)

    DE Byron Young — 65.8 (45 plays)

    S Trevon Flowers — 65.8 (78 plays)

    DE Tyler Baron — 64.6 (22 plays)

    CB Warren Burrell — 63.0 (78 plays)

    DE Roman Harrison — 59.7 (29 plays)

    LB Jeremy Banks — 59.1 (70 plays)

    S Jaylen McCollough — 54.2 (78 plays)

    What a fitting end to the season for Theo Jackson. The fifth-year senior had a career season and ended the regular season with his first interception of the season and first pick six of his career.

    It was a big day for most of the seniors on Tennessee’s defense. Seniors earned five of the seven top defensive grades.

    Ryan Schumpert is a senior at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since the moment he stepped on campus. He just completed a three-year stint with the Daily Beacon, the last two of which as the Sports Editor. Ryan also spent last three years at Volquest providing strong Tennessee baseball coverage of Tony Vitello's resurgent program. While the bulk of Ryan's responsibilities involved beat coverage and writing, he also recorded podcasts for both the Beacon and Volquest. Did we leave out the part about Ryan interning for the Smokies? Ryan's work ethic, versatility, and strong writing skills are but three of the reasons why Vol Nation will be hearing from Ryan for years to come.