- Edward Aschoff, ESPN Staff Writer
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Schedule: The Vols begin practice at 4:30 p.m. ET on Friday. Tennessee will hold an open practice on Aug. 17 at 7 p.m. ET at Neyland Stadium. The plan is for it to simulate a preseason game. Players will be in pads for the first time on Tuesday, Aug. 6.
On the mend: Linebacker Curt Maggitt (knee, shoulder) and safety Jaylen Reeves-Maybin (shoulder) both missed the spring. Keep an eye on Maggitt. He hopes to be 100 percent once the season starts. Safety Brian Randolph is returning to the field after tearing his ACL early last season.
Key battle: The Vols left spring without the quarterback spot being settled. Justin Worley and Nathan Peterman were about as even as they could have been this spring, but there's a sense that Worley, who has the only college experience, has the edge heading into fall camp. Still, first-year coach Butch Jones won't say who leads and is hoping that one took over as more of a leader during the offseason. Finding a quarterback is the top priority for the Vols heading into the season.
Of note: With the loss of the team's top four pass-catchers from 2012, the Vols will have to replace the 2,914 receiving yards and 26 touchdowns they combined for last year. That won't be easy, as receiver Alton "Pig" Howard is the only pass-catcher who returns with double-digit catches (10) from a year ago and Vincent Dallas returns the most receiving yards (149) from a year ago.
Predicted order of finish: Picked to finish fifth in the SEC East at SEC media days.
They said it: "We always talk about inches make the champion and everyone is searching for the inches. I'm a firm believer in team chemistry and I think we all know this, it's not a secret. Are we going to be the most talented team this year? No we're not. We all understand that, but talent doesn't win championships. Teams win championships." -- Jones
Schedule: The Vols begin practice at 4:30 p.m. ET on Friday. Tennessee will hold an open practice on Aug. 17 at 7 p.m. ET at Neyland Stadium. The plan is for it to simulate a preseason game.