The 2011 Offense Part 2

In the last half of the 2010 season, the Vols offense has become explosive in the passing game. Offensive Coordinator Jim Chaney feels comfortable letting QB Tyler Bray air it out, especially with two senior wide receivers. Leading the way is senior Denarius Moore, who has drastically improved his NFL stock these last few games. If he has a good outing in the bowl game as well as at the NFL combine/UT’s senior day then there is no telling how high he could go, he could even potentially sneak into the first day of the draft. As a consistent deep threat, Moore could definitely be an NFL QB’s best friend especially if he does not have any reliable young receivers to help him out. 

Next to Moore is Gerald Jones, who sat out the 3 of the first 4 games due to an injury. Jones has been a play maker on 3rd down conversions for the Vols as well as a down the middle threat. Without Jones the Vols struggled in both 3rd down conversions and completions over the middle, but with him as the season has progressed both of those statistics have improved. Jones could be drafted late or try the free agency but his size is a disadvantage. Unfortunately the Vols cannot keep these guys next season as they both have used up their four years of eligibility. Replacing them is a tough task to fill for Jim Chaney, as 47% of the Vols passing yards this season were thrown to Moore and Jones.

Name Games Played Receptions Yards Average Touchdowns

Average per Game

Denarius Moore

12 43 912 21.2 9

64

Gerald Jones 9 46 507 11.0 3

37

These statistics are from utsports.com

However helping Chaney with this enormous task is renowned wide receivers coach Charlie Baggett, who has done extremely well coaching up the freshman and improving these seniors this year. Let’s take a look at what we have returning next season…

Returning Receivers

The Vols will return two juniors in Zach Rogers and transfer DeMario Williams, three sophomores in Justin Hunter, Da’Rick Rogers, and Matt Milton, and a redshirt freshman in Ted Meline, who is listed as a DB right now but should be moved to receiver if things continue to improve for defensive back recruiting. Zach Rogers should be the starting slot receiver, as he will have had the most time to learn the offensive system which in Jim Chaney’s system is key because the role of the slot receiver is the most complicated. Rogers is the younger brother of former Vols receiver Austin Rogers and at one point was considered to be the fastest guy on the team, although some of the freshman appear to have taken over that title. Rogers will be key for third down conversions over the middle in a role very similar to Gerald Jones this season.

Yards

Games Played Receptions Yards Average TD’s Average Per Game
2010 11 13 202 15.5 1

18.4

2009

12 3 19 6.3 0 1.6
Recruting: Rivals: *** # 9 TN, # 54 WR

Scout: *** # 56 WR

2008

14 receptions 369 yards 6 TD’s 59 rushes 671 yards 9 TD’s
2007 29 receptions 688 yards 8 TD’s 44 rushes 465 yards

5 TD’s

Stats are from utsports.com

Justin Hunter showcased his ability this year, and established himself as a deep threat option down the field. Hunter runs track, so his time during the spring will be limited, but if he can continue to get a firm foundation on this offense he will be starting this fall. Hunter will be a great replacement for Denarius Moore, and his position coach has given him significant praise even saying he has the potential for Randy Moss type talent. Hunter’s 4.4 forty yard dash speed and  outstanding leaping ability, he won high school state championships in high jump and long jump, will give QB Tyler Bray a consistent deep threat down the field that is reliable and extremely useful.

Year

Games Played Receptions Yards Average TD’s

Average per Game

2010 12 15 407 27.1 6

33.9

Recruiting

Rivals: **** #3 VA #8 WR #75 USA Scout: **** #11 WR
2009 46  Receptions 714 Yards

9 Touchdowns

2008

34 Receptions 545 Yards 13 Touchdowns

Stats are from utsports.com


Da’Rick Rogers is another super talented upcoming sophomore who showed flashes of greatness this season. Rogers took longer to learn the playbook than fellow receiver Hunter and understandably saw passes thrown his direction less, but the second half of the season D. Rogers has seen more action and has done well with his role. With winter conditioning and spring practice work, expect D. Rogers to push both Z. Rogers and J. Hunter for starting roles. Perhaps Charlie Baggett has another Chris Carter and Randy Moss coaching job up his sleeve, whom he coached at the Vikings earlier this decade. D. Rogers also gives the running game an occasional spark making defenses always account for him when he is on the field.

Years

Games Played Receptions Yards Average TD’s Average Per Game
2010 12 10 122 12.2 1

10.2

Year

Carries Yards Long Average TD’s
2010 14 124 21 8.9 0

 

Recruiting

Rivals: ***** #1 GA, #2 WR, #9 USA Scout: ***** #4 WR
2009 84 receptions 1641 yards

22 touchdowns

2008

66 receptions 1300 yards 11 touchdowns

Stats are from utsports.com


Upcoming sophomore Matt Milton also will compete for playing time this off-season. As an early enrollee Milton has already been through one winter conditioning, spring practice, and summer work out session as well as a full season of practices.  During this time Milton has worked to learn the playbook and get stronger. At 6’5” and 220 pounds Milton is a sizeable match up that not many teams can win. Milton did not redshirt this season as he saw action in a couple of games this year including LSU but did not register any receptions according to http://www.utsports.com.

Rivals

Scout

****

****

#18 WR, #3 IL, #135 USA

#17 WR


Redshirt Freshman Ted Meline is the final potential returning receiver. Recruited to play wide out, Meline was moved to the secondary out of depth concerns mid way through last spring. Of course it is possible that he stays put in the secondary, but with depth concerns switching back to receiver the move seems likely. If Meline can work hard this offseason he has potential to see the field this fall.

Rivals

Scout
****

***

#41 WR, #40 FL

#69 WR

Junior DeMario Williams will also be available after sitting out the year on a transfer from MTSU. As a basketball player there Williams decided he wanted to return to football and transferred to the Vols. With work during the offseason Williams could see playing time early on especially if the freshman class needs time to develop.

Incoming Freshman

Joining these 6 receivers this fall will be two talented incoming freshmen in DeAnthony Arnett and Vincent Dallas. Vincent Dallas joins the Vols out of Ellenwood, GA and will be an early enrollee, which will be a big help in his development at wide receiver. Boasting offers from major programs such as Auburn, Florida, Nebraska, North Carolina, West Virginia, and Oklahoma among others, Dallas should give the Vols some depth in the receiving game as well as being given a look at kick and punt returns.

Rivals Scout
****

***

#52 Ath, #36 GA

#42 WR

And as great as it is to have Dallas coming in, one of the gems of this recruiting class early on is fellow incoming freshman wide receiver DeAnthony Arnett. The recruit, who had 41 receptions for 876 yards and 10 touchdowns this season, was considered a Michigan State lock for a while. However, Arnett committed to Tennessee during the season over offers from Michigan State, Michigan, Notre Dame, USC, and California among others. This was a job well done for his primary recruiter Charlie Baggett who was returning to his old stomping grounds after an earlier career stop at Michigan State. Arnett’s ability to elevate and catch the ball in traffic could prove vital in 2011 but he will need to bulk up significantly during the offseason.

Rivals

Scout

****

****
#6 WR, #2 MI,#60 USA

#6 WR

Projected Depth Chart

The receiving corp has one of the greatest receiving coaches in history and will be ready for what is sure to be another pass happy offense next season. This blogger’s projected depth chart, for the start of season, as of now is as follows:
1.    Justin Hunter and Zach Rogers
2.    Da’Rick Rogers and Matt Milton
3.    De’Anthony Arnett and Demario Williams
4.    Vincent Dallas and Ted Meline

Coming Soon: Tight Ends

All Photos are from http://www.govolsxtra.com except:

Zach Rogers photo from http://www.utdailybeacon.com

Vincent Dallas photo from http://www.rivals.com

DeAnthony Arnett photo from http://www.bleacherreport.com

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About Steven Harris

Steven Harris is a fifth year senior at the University of Tennessee. Majoring in sports journalism, this blog provides an outlet for Harris to share his thoughts on the state of the University of Tennessee's athletic department''s Volunteer teams. View all posts by Steven Harris

3 responses to “The 2011 Offense Part 2

  • William

    Pretty good analysis of the returning receivers Steven, I would argue with you about the seniors draft status however. Since they are keeping the 3 day format for the NFL draft I don’t think Moore will play his way to day one, to me he’s a 3rd round pick at best. For Gerald the problem isn’t going to be his size, smaller receivers have their place in the league. His problem is going to be questions about his ability to stay healthy, seems like he’s been nicked up the past 2+ years, and questions about his speed.

    • orangevol

      I think Moore could swing into the late Second round if he has another 200 yard game in a bowl and a great showing at Combine, and senior day. Jones i think is too short with not enough talent. he is talented and like you said short guys have their place but they are way more talented than jones

      • William

        Moore would have to wow at the combine, run faster than his listed times and or jump out of the building, as well as catch every ball in the position drills.
        I do agree about Jones, but people said that about Welker too, so if Jones can display a knack for getting open in some camp in the spring, summer, and fall he could stick with a team.

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