Coming out of high school at Athens Academy, Len'Neth Whitehead was considered an athlete by most schools recruiting him, with the option to play running back or linebacker. Whitehead chose Tennessee and opted to play on the offensive side of the ball. The former top-100 prospect battled injuries last fall, but he is back working with Tennessee in a limited capacity this spring, and he will continue to work to be full-speed by fall.
Whitehead's past as a linebacker has always raised the question about his future as a running back in Knoxville. Still, it does not appear a position change is in the near future, according to running back coach Jerry Mack.
"Right now, he's locked in at running back," Mack said during Tuesday's media availability. "He's still nursing his injury. He's not 100% as far as full-contact, but he goes through all our drills with us. He does everything. Really intelligent player, too. He sits in the meeting room, he understands and knows the signals, and he knows everything that we're doing, but there has been no discussion right now about moving him to the linebacker position."
Whitehead suffered a severe lower leg injury during his senior campaign, and after working to return last fall, he drew praise from Jeremy Pruitt before Whitehead's COVID freshman season was cut short by a shoulder injury.
Tennessee remains precariously thin at the inside linebacker position with Aaron Beasley, Aaron Willis and Martavius French suspended. Jeremy Banks and Roman Harrison will both work here in the future, but both of these guys are limited this spring and will likely not compete at full speed until the fall.