t won’t be easy for Tennessee to replace the experience and production of Darrell Taylor, the team’s leader in sacks each of the past two years. The Seattle Seahawks chose Taylor in the second round of this year’s NFL draft, and there’s no obvious candidate on the Vols’ roster who appears to be ready to take over as their top edge rusher.
DC Derrick Ansley indicated that Bennett and Johnson are the early favorites to start at outside linebacker, with sophomore Roman Harrison “backing them up.” Ansley said junior John Mincey, a former defensive end, and freshmen Morven Joseph and Tyler Baron also are in the picture.
“Losing a guy like Darrell — obviously, second-round draft pick, one of the top ends in the draft (this) year — it’s going to be a challenge to replace that kind of production, that kind of talent,” DC Derrick Ansley said Thursday afternoon during a Zoom conference with local media. “It’s going to kind of be by committee. We have a couple guys that played a little bit last year, and we need younger guys to step forward.
“Kivon Bennett being a guy that has pass-rush ability. Deandre Johnson has pass-rush ability, and both of those guys are redshirt juniors (or seniors), so they’ve been here for four years. And then backing them up, giving them some push, is Roman Harrison.”
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