Vols QB Race Still Wide Open

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Updated: 4/22/2013 7:10 pm

Knoxville-(WDEF) The Vols offense scored only one touchdown during Saturday's Orange and White game. As a result, quarterbacks Justin Worley and Nathan Peterman will continue to fight for the starting job.

Even after fifteen practices this spring, Vols head coach Butch Jones says the quarterback position is still a work in progress. "It's still wide open. It's just like every position. It'll be wide open. The growth that a football team can make from May to the end of July can be monumental." Said Peterman,"Peyton Manning keeps echoing in my head. He stressed the summer is going to be big. It was big when he was here, saying you've got to get on the same page as the receivers."

Besides performance, Coach Jones says leadership will be a key attribute for his quarterback. "Name me a good football team or a great football team whose quarterback wasn't a great leader. And usually, your average or below average football teams, your quarterback brings now leadership value." Said Worley,"He'll (Jones) come in during a quarterback meeting. Kind of burst in the door and write leadership on the board or things like that. Touch on small things about how we can help the team, and influence others around us."

Leadership means taking responsibility, even for the mistakes. Said Peterman,"If there's a penalty, a pre-snap penalty, it's our fault. So we are going to take responsibility for that. We need to get the O-line in the right areas and just get better."

Worley and Peterman combined for 17 of 41 in the passing game on Saturday. Both guys will try to improve on those numbers, as well as their conditioning for Coach Jones up-tempo offense. Said Peterman,"That's why the up-tempo offense is so successful and why you run up-tempo. It is hard conditioning-wise on you and the defense. If you get in good condition and run it, then the defense will be struggling with it."

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