As the season nears, the staff at Rocky Top Talk will be conducting an internal poll to determine the top ten most important players on Tennessee’s roster for 2017. You’ll see our staff’s name, along with where they ranked said player. We’ll take it from ten to one, one post at a time.
We’ll get rolling with our number ten most important player, freshman offensive lineman Trey Smith. Smith was the number one overall recruit in the country last year and will be immediately needed up front. He’s worked mostly at guard so far, but could play just about anywhere if needed. He’s a part of the equation, we just don’t quite know where yet.
Terry Lambert: Not Ranked
There’s little doubt that Trey Smith will be heavily relied upon early and often on Tennessee’s offensive line. The staff needs Smith to hit the ground running, wherever he ends up. He looked the part in the Orange and White game and should find his way into the starting lineup right off the bat. Smith should bridge the gap as Tennessee ushers in a new group of offensive lineman after this season.
Evan Winter: #10
Tennessee’s struggles at offensive line have been well documented during Butch’s time in Knoxville. With the problems ranging from a lack of talent to a lack of development, the last thing the Vols need is another highly recruited piece to come in and remain ineffective. Trey Smith needs to not only establish a presence early, but also show that he is the centerpiece of the offensive line for the future.
Connor Knapp: #8
Trey Smith comes in rated as the overall #1 recruit in the 2017 class according to ESPN. Assuming he is given the opportunity to start, the Vols desperately need him to live up to the hype. Smith had the added benefit of going through spring practice, so it’s fair to expect him to come in and immediately contribute the the Tennessee offensive line.