Examining which Tennessee quarterback is best fit for new offense

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The two scholarship quarterbacks on the roster for the spring were not brought to Tennessee to run a pro-style offense. Jarrett Guarantano and Will McBride are dual-threat quarterbacks used to a spread offense.

This spring will be quite the adjustment for them. They will take more snaps under center and likely will have to command a huddle. Those are things they didn’t do under coach Butch Jones.

Guarantano fits the offensive philosophy a bit better than McBride. Though listed as a dual-threat QB when he signed with Tennessee, Guarantano stood in the pocket even while under pressure. He didn’t tuck the ball and look to run often.

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The 6-foot-4, 200-pound Guarantano also can push the ball down the field. Offensive coordinator Tyson Helton wants the passing game to stretch the defense and be a vertical threat.

McBride seemed to connect with the team more than Guarantano. At 6-1, 195 pounds he is smaller than Guarantano and doesn’t have the same arm strength.

Quarterback signee JT Shrout is a prototypical pro-style quarterback. He started only one season for Hart High School in Newhall, Calif. He’ll join the team in June and seems likely to be redshirted.

Graduate transfer Keller Chryst has experience running a similar offense while at Stanford, and he’ll also join the team this summer. There’s a reason he wasn’t able to win back his job from KJ Costello, though. Chryst probably fits the offense the best, but Guarantano probably possesses the most (raw) talent.

The bigger concern might be the offensive line, though. There were only eight healthy scholarship linemen available for spring practice on Tuesday. Without consistent line play, the quarterback won’t have enough time to operate any offense.

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