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Why does Tennessee continue to stick with struggling running game?

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Pruitt explains.........................

 

Tennessee’s rushing performance against Charlotte was pathetic, that’s not up for debate after the Vols managed to gain only 20 yards on the ground on 26 attempts last weekend. The question is, can Tennessee do anything about it with three league games remaining and with the program’s bowl hopes on the line during that span?

Jeremy Pruitt was faced with many questions on that topic during his most recent media availability and he appeared to be as exasperated by the issues as any Tennessee fans out there frustrated by the team’s performance against the 49ers.

“We didn’t block very well. We basically got whipped at the point of attack,” Pruitt said of his team’s rushing woes on Saturday. “We had some mental errors that we haven’t been having for quite some time. We had free guys in the hole. That will get you before you get going.”

With the offensive line struggling so much, why does Tennessee stick with the run? It’s a fair question and something Pruitt was asked as a follow-up. According to the head Vol, he believes winning in the SEC is dependent on having a balanced offensive attack.

“It’s hard to win in this league if you can’t run the football, or any league. You have to be committed to it and we have to find a way to get it done,” Pruitt continued. “I know as a defensive coach, if you’re coaching D-linemen, if they’re going to pass it every snap those guys can turn loose and go put the offensive line at a disadvantage. You’ve got to be able to run the football to some degree.”

 

 

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The Tennessee coach also offered up his thoughts on the team's offensive line play.

 

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I get trying to establish balance. I really do but I really think you play to your strengths. And I think WR is a very strong place for this team.

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How many times do you hear that, even if it's incomplete, you still have to attempt to throw long? That way at least the defense has to respect the threat, and always has to commit guys to defend the deep field. 

Same thing with the running game. If you're a threat to run the ball, even unsuccesfully, the defense still has to commit guys to play against it. 

 

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Vols rush attempts: 324

Vols Passing attempts: 223

 

Its more like 60/40

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I think we all know the deficiency of the offensive line. The problem is you can overcome that with quick passes. Doesn't always have to be just run. Lots of teams overcome weak offensive lines with quick short passing. 

 

Running isn't the only solution. I think jgs deficiencies show up though in that type of offense.

 

 

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2 hours ago, RobVol said:

I think we all know the deficiency of the offensive line. The problem is you can overcome that with quick passes. Doesn't always have to be just run. Lots of teams overcome weak offensive lines with quick short passing. 

 

Running isn't the only solution. I think jgs deficiencies show up though in that type of offense.

 

 

Which the Vols done with success, vs SCarolina. But got away from vs Charlotte. 

Penetration is the best way to disrupt the running game. Ours gets disrupted a lot, has all season long. I expect the Vols get back to substituting the short pass for the running game. At least until Ty gets back up to speed. Problem with that is, I'll bet Kentucky expects it too...

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