Tennessee tight end Princeton Fant is one of the many Volunteer players that are feeling much more confident this year compared to last. With a full year and another off-season in the Josh Heupel system now in the rearview mirror, many of Tennessee’s players have a better sense of what to expect here in their second training camp under Heupel.
However, it isn’t just on the field during training camp. With the season-opener on the horizon, players are also getting a better sense on what evolutions and additions will come from the offense this upcoming season. According to Fant, the tight end position could see a bigger role in the passing game ahead.
“The passing game and the blocking game as well,” Fant answered when asked about what he had been working on this off-season. “The passing game, we’re going to get a lot more touches at tight end. Blocking game, I’ve been working on block game ever since spring ball, summer ball. And that’s something that I really focused on. To be out there, go out there and make those blocks against [defensive] ends, linebackers on the perimeter, different things like that.”
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Fant and Tennessee tight end Jacob Warren are entering their third straight year near or at the top of Tennessee’s tight end group together. The two players totaled 399 yards last season through the air, with Fant leading the group at 220 yards on 16 receptions and Warren right behind at 179 yards on 18 receptions. While those stats were certainly productive in year one of the system, Fant expects the tight end group to have a more significant roll in an offense that is humming during training camp.
“I feel like we’re all buying into the pass game as well,” Fant said on Tuesday. “Just buying into the coaches, understanding what’s going on. Coming in, year two with the new coaches, it’s definitely been very smooth, very sharp. We’re ready to compete.”
Tennessee’s tight end room accounted for approximetly 12 percent of Tennessee’s receiving yards last season. If Tennessee wants to continue to expand and evolve the offense, which it looks as though they are doing, using the Vols’ two talented and experienced tight ends more seems like a great place to start.
Tennessee will open the 2022 season on Thursday, Sept. 1 at 7:00 p.m. ET on the SEC Network.