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PFF Grades: Tennessee at Florida

Photo via Tennessee Athletics

Tennessee dropped its first game of the 2023 season Saturday night at Florida. The Gators scored 26 unanswered first half points and coasted to a huge win for Billy Napier.

If you need a reminder on how Pro Football Focus works, read the opening of the Virginia 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 16 plays — 25% of offensive plays)

QB Joe Milton III — 80.3 (66 plays)

RB Jaylen Wright — 74.7 (41 plays)

WR Bru McCoy — 71.2 (66 plays)

WR Squirrel White — 70.8 (51 plays)

RG Javontez Spraggins — 65.6 (66 plays)

TE McCallan Castles — 64.3 (37 plays)

RB Jabari Small — 63.7 (25 plays)

WR Ramel Keyton — 62.1 (66 plays)

LT John Campbell Jr. — 61.9 (66 plays)

TE Jacob Warren — 55.5 (29 plays)

C Ollie Lane — 54.7 (57 plays)

LG Andrej Karic — 51.7 (66 plays)

RT Jeremiah Crawford — 43.0 (66 plays)

Tennessee receiver Dont’e Thornton graded out as the Vols’ best offensive player with a 84.0 grade but played just 15 snaps.

Joe Milton III and Tennessee’s receivers all graded out at least respectably. Besides his horrific interception, Milton wasn’t bad against Florida. But some of the senior quarterback’s limitations were clear in the Vols’ passing game.

Unsurprisingly, Tennessee’s offensive line graded out horrifically. Four of the lowest five grades were from offensive linemen including really poor grades from Lane, Karic and Crawford. Crawford, who started at right tackle and played every snap over Gerald Mincey, earned a 26.6 pass block grade.

More From RTI: Five Critical Moments As Tennessee Football Falls At Florida

Defensive Grades (minimum of 17 plays — 25% of defensive plays)

LB Arion Carter — 78.3 (19 plays)

DT Omarr Norman-Lott — 74.3 (39 plays)

LB Aaron Beasley — 72.7 (70 plays)

S Jaylen McCollough — 72.2 (71 plays)

CB Gabe Jeudy-Lally — 70.6 (60 plays)

DE Tyler Baron — 70.5 (41 plays)

LEO Roman Harrison — 67.7 (42 plays)

STAR Brandon Turnage — 67.0 (18 plays)

LB Elijah Herring — 65.7 (53 plays)

DT Bryson Eason — 63.8 (30 plays)

LEO James Pearce Jr. — 63.0 (37 plays)

DT Omari Thomas — 60.7 (34 plays)

CB Kamal Hadden — 60.5 (60 plays)

S Wesley Walker — 60.1 (71 plays)

STAR Tamarion McDonald — 57.3 (50 plays)

DT Kurott Garland — 57.0 (31 plays)

Let’s start with the grades for a few players who didn’t play 19 snaps. Tyre West earned a 73.7 grade in 14 plays, Dominic Bailey earned a 69.1 grade in 16 plays, Rickey Gibson earned a 55.8 grade in 11 plays and Warren Burrell earned a 55.6 grade in 11 snaps.

Here’s how Tennessee’s defensive backs graded out under the tackling category: McCollough (62.9), Jeudy-Lally (64.2) Turnage (77.1), Hadden (31.2), Walker (26.3), McDonald (45.8), Gibson (21.7). The Vols tackling failed the eye test and the PFF test.

Arion Carter graded out as Tennessee’s top defender after struggling the first two weeks of the season. That was a good sign from the talented freshman.

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3 Responses

  1. Offense line was flat…unmotivated. Milton was and is timid with the football. He is doing what got Fulmer fired. [He earned the job by trying to win and lost it trying to avoid loss.] Arm tackling is obviously what they practiced and did it with the expected results from arm tackling. I disagreed with a few offensive plays like soooo many others did, but am willing to take the results, unlike those who won’t when they don’t work, e.g., run up the middle on 4th and 20 when you have the strongest arm in college football and occasionally the best OL…when they want to be. I’m all for Heupel’s composure, but occasionally, you have to get animated on the sideline!!! Get after those boys!! Take a lesson or two fro Coach Pat and Coach Rick! [Sometimes a Technical Foul will motivate your players…sometimes a boot will do the same.]

  2. Warren Burrell should not play corner unless he literally has to. And damnit flip Mincey to LT and Campbell to RT. Watch and see if the offense doesn’t get better.

  3. How did Haden get a 60. He’s has been horrible for 2 weeks now. Do we not have anymore DB’s?

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