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Vanderbilt Football Depth Chart vs. Tennessee: McCrary to Start, Nigel Bowden to Return?

Nigel Bowden missed last week's game against Mississippi State and the Bulldogs hung 51 points on Vanderbilt. Will the stout inside linebacker return to shut down Tennessee in the Commodores' season finale?

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Patton Robinette and Stephen Rivers both earned playing time in last week's 51-0 loss to Mississippi State. They didn't show enough to uproot Johnny McCrary as Vanderbilt's starting quarterback.

McCrary will end Vanderbilt's 2014 season as the starter despite leading the 'Dores to just one touchdown in their past two games. This will be the redshirt freshman's fifth straight start.


The rest of the depth chart didn't hold many surprises, barring a few "-or-" designations. Nigel Bowden's status for Saturday's game is still up in the air after missing the Mississippi State game due to injury. If he can't make it, Ja'karri Thomas will start in his place. Elsewhere on the defensive side of the ball, Tre Herndon and Jay Woods may have played their way into starting roles after showing growth throughout the 2014 season. Even if they don't see the field for the first snap of the game they're likely to earn plenty of snaps against Tennessee.

Additionally, Darreon Herring has now officially moved from linebacker to nickel back on the team's depth chart. He'll be backed up by Darrius Sims, who does not appear with the running backs this week despite Vandy's lack of depth at the position. Ralph Webb and Dallas Rivers will handle off of the 'Dores carries vs. UT.

After flip-flopping his way through the first half of the season, Derek Mason has finally committed to a quarterback. Despite some growing pains, Johnny McCrary is his guy. Still, I'd be surprised if Vandy didn't turn to the hero from last year's win over the Volunteers, Patton Robinette, at some point during Saturday's game.