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April 18, 2013

Practice 14 Nuts and Bolts

Tennessee's final workout prior to Saturday's Orange & White game was mostly a situational walk-through Thursday morning inside Neyland Stadium.

With the Vols in only shells and helmets, Butch Jones had his team work predominantly on special teams when it wasn't focusing on individual drills. Tennessee worked extensively on its kickoff and punt teams as a whole. But Zach Azzanni still tutored his wide receivers in some fairly rigorous drills, and Don Mahoney's offensive line worked on calls and sets with the quarterbacks for pass protection. Defensive coordinator John Jancek worked a great deal with the Vols' defensive linemen while DL coach Steve Stripling assisted in special teams work.

Tennessee continued to miss key players who are out with injuries or recovering from offseason surgeries. The Vols' non-participation list included: Jacob Carter, Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Riyahd Jones, Paul Harris, Jason Croom, Brendan Downs, Curt Maggitt, Antonio 'Tiny' Richardson and Justin Meredith. Additionally, Mo Couch and Daniel Hood continued their limited work in green jerseys, and offensive lineman Zach Fulton spent much of practice with the Vols' injured players doing core and flexibility exercises. Tailback Marlin Lane also remained indefinitely suspended. Kyler Kerbyson got much of the work on the offensive line in Fulton's absence.

The team then shifted to work in some seven-on-seven settings. But the Vols' depleted units at both wide receiver and defensive back made evaluations tough.

Michael Palardy and Matt Darr punted well in the early going, focusing on directional punts toward the left boundary. Both players dropped several kicks inside the 10-yard line and near the sideline.

Devrin Young, Alton 'Pig' Howard, Winston Williams, Rajion Neal and Vincent Dallas all got some work returning punts.

The Vols wrapped up with situational work against air on both sides of the ball and then worked on leaving the field and returning to the field from the locker room. It was more attention to detail work that has characterized this spring.


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