The SEC lacked dynamic pass-catching tight ends in 2014, but for the first quarter of the season the Tennessee Volunteers claimed one of them in the form of then-true freshman Ethan Wolf.

In his first three games of last season, Wolf caught 13 passes for 115 yards. Then he more or less disappeared. In his final nine games of the season including UT’s bowl win (he missed UT’s Week 3 loss to Oklahoma with an injury) he caught just 10 total passes for 97 yards, an average of barely more than one catch per game.

Injury troubles played a major role in Wolf’s decreased production during the course of the season, as did inexperience once Tennessee entered SEC play.

Nevertheless, Wolf is now healthier than he was at any time during the back-half of last season, and he has a year of valuable SEC experience under his belt.

This all begs the question: What can Tennessee get out of Wolf in 2015? Will he return to his production from the first three games of his career, or will he continue to struggle to find his niche in Tennessee’s passing game, now headed by Joshua Dobbs and not graduated senior Justin Worley?

The odds favor a return to prominence for Wolf, who is still considered one of the best tight ends in the conference along with Vanderbilt’s Steven Scheu, Ole Miss’ Evan Engram, Arkansas’ Hunter Henry and others.

First of all, Wolf stands 6-foot-5 and weighs a sturdy 240 pounds, allowing him to bring the physicality necessary to compete at the tight end position in the SEC. He moves much better than most athletes his size and has wide receiver hands to go with his large frame.

Wolf’s combination of size, balance and hands makes him as dangerous a receiving threat across the middle as any tight end in the conference. If Tennessee wideouts Marquez North, Pig Howard and Von Pearson all perform as expected on the perimeter in 2015, Wolf should be able to command the middle portion of the field in obvious passing situations.

What’s even better about Wolf is that he’d rather be blocking, which in a strange way will benefit him as a receiving threat as well.

When he first arrived in Knoxville as a 2014 early enrollee, he told head coach Butch Jones he’d be okay if Jones only used him as an extra blocker on offense.

The two-way high school star had played defensive end in addition to tight end in high school, and he made it no secret he loved to get dirty in the trenches battling with the big uglies of the opposition. While his intentions were pure, Jones thought it best to use Wolf as both a blocker and a receiver at the tight end position, and early in the season it worked brilliantly.

Because Wolf is such an eager blocker with great size to handle opposing defensive linemen and linebackers, he can still serve as a valuable asset in Tennessee’s ground game, which picked up some serious steam late last season. And when Tennessee’s run game is working, Wolf can serve as a dynamic receiving option in play-action situations.

Wolf’s versatility allows him the ability to be an every-down player for the Vols, which should allow him the opportunity to earn all-conference honors before his career in Knoxville comes to a close. He can run block, pass protect, get to the edge and block in space on a screen pass, and can catch balls as a true receiver and in play-action situations.

It’s that versatility, combined with his size and other physical gifts that set Wolf apart from the rest of the SEC’s tight ends.

ESPN SEC blogger Chris Low said it best when he wrote “Wolf has all the tools to be Tennessee’s next All-SEC tight end.” Those are pretty strong words, but they’re justified, even after an injury-riddled freshman season.

So to circle back to the original premise, what can Tennessee get out of Wolf in 2015? The answer is simply: plenty.