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Tennessee lands another weekly SEC Award by playing with a “purpose”

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It’s becoming a tradition almost as strong as checkerboard end zones or the Vol Walk; Tennessee has once again been named as a weekly SEC Award recipient.

The latest to pick up an SEC award is offensive lineman Darnell Wright, who manned the right tackle position in Tennessee’s 44-6 win over Kentucky on Saturday.

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“It’s the purpose that he’s had inside the building, another year of maturity for him,” Tennessee head coach Josh Heupel said on Monday. “In football, understanding, but also who he is, how he approaches the practice field and the weight room.

“It’s been very intentional. He’s gained another year of strength so his power, his athleticism, shows up in a different way than it did a year ago. It was really good a year ago too. You put all of those pieces together, it lends itself to playing at the level that he is.”

Here’s a look at what Wright accomplished – and helped the Vols accomplish – against the Cats:

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  • Wright blocked and paved the way for a Tennessee offense that put 422 yards – 127 more than Kentucky’s defensive average allowed – as the No. 3 Vols beat the No. 19 Wildcats, 44-6, in Neyland Stadium.
  • Making his 36th career start, saw 68 offensive snaps and did not allow a sack, a pressure or a penalty. He was the highest graded offensive player in the game (91.2) according to Pro Football Focus.
  • The Vols rushed for 177 yards and threw for 245 yards as Kentucky saw a streak of 11 consecutive games allowing 24 or fewer points come to an end.
  • Wright has not allowed a sack in 540 offensive snaps this season, a streak that extends 14 consecutive games dating back to last year.
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