Several weeks ago, Joshua Dobbs was a third string quarterback. Now, the sophomore looks to be Tennessee’s quarterback of the future.

Dobbs was on pace to redshirt through the Vols first seven games before replacing Nathan Peterman in Week 9 against Alabama. Since then, the Alpharetta, Ga., native has started in four games, leading Tennessee to a 3-1 record and its first bowl appearance since 2010.

Dobbs recorded 1,077 yards, eight touchdowns and five interceptions on 96-of-156 passing, while rushing for 393 yards and six touchdowns. The Vols look to be a surprise contender in the SEC East next season with the dual-threat quarterback under center. Tennessee returns its entire starting receiving corps and will add talent at the skill positions with commitments from five-star wide receiver Preston Williams and four-star JUCO transfer Alvin Kamara.

Jalen Hurd’s stellar debut

It should come as no surprise that Jalen Hurd was Tennessee’s best offensive freshman. However, the former five-star prospect was also the Vols best offensive player, despite missing an entire year of action rehabbing a shoulder injury.

Hurd rushed for a team-best 777 yards and three touchdowns, the most by a Tennessee freshman since Arian Foster (879) in 2005. The Hendersonville, Tenn., native also became the first Vols running back since Foster to receive SEC Freshman of the Week honors.

With the addition of Kamara, as well as Cincinnati transfer Ralph David Abernathy IV, Hurd should lead a talented rushing attack as Tennessee’s feature back in 2015.

Struggles in the trenches

Tennessee’s offensive line was horrendous in 2014.  The Vols ranked No. 118 in sacks allowed with a total of 42 and an average of 3.5 per game. Tennessee also ranked No. 124 in tackles for loss allowed, ahead of only Wake Forest with 97.

But the Vols will add several key additions in 2015. Dontavius Blair, who redshirted after transferring as a four-star JUCO prospect, should start for Tennessee next season.. Based on his recruiting hype, Blair should be the most talented player on Vols’ line next season, but remains a mystery given his lack of playing time.

The Vols 2015 class also includes Jack Jones, a four-star prospect and two-time reigning Mr. Football Award winner, as well as three-star commits Venzell Boulware, Zach Stewart and Chance Hall.