Tennessee DL Darrell Taylor suspended, reportedly for kicking teammate in head during fight

ATLANTA, GA – SEPTEMBER 04: Darrell Taylor #19 of the Tennessee Volunteers sacks TaQuon Marshall #16 of the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on September 4, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

There’s never a dull moment at Tennessee, even during a bye week.

When we last checked in with the Vols, one of the team’s top wide receivers, Marquez Callaway, was attempting to explain why he liked a tweet saying Butch Jones is a worse head coach than Tyson Summers, who is 5-11 in two seasons at Georgia Southern, including 0-4 this year.

Callaway’s “like” was discovered Thursday night. On Friday, reports emerged that a fight occurred during practice Thursday morning with one player, Darrell Taylor, kicking his teammate, Trey Smith, in the face.

After a VolQuest.com report emerged on Monday morning, Jones confirmed that Taylor, a starting defensive end, has been suspended indefinitely.

“Darrell Taylor has been suspended indefinitely,” Jones said. “There has been no timetable set on his return. He’ll have certain stipulations and requirements that must be met. There are multiple factors that have led to this decision. That will be my only statement at this point in time regarding Darrell.

From VolQuest.com’s Monday morning report:

Tennessee head coach Butch Jones has suspended defensive end Darrell Taylor indefinitely following a Thursday morning fight on the practice field, per multiple sources.

Taylor and freshman offensive lineman Trey Smith got into a scuffle at practice last Thursday, with Taylor kicking Smith in the face. The blow required Smith to receive stitches.

Taylor, a redshirt sophomore, was ejected for fighting during the second half of UT’s last game, a Sept. 30 loss against Georgia. Because of that fight, Taylor was suspended for the first half of the Vols’ upcoming game against South Carolina. Now, it appears Taylor’s absence from the field will be prolonged.

Through five games, Taylor has 20 tackles, two tackles for loss and a sack. In the season opener against Georgia Tech, a 42-41 win, Taylor registered 12 stops, including the game-sealing play to stop Yellow Jackets QB TaQuon Marshall on a two-point try in double-overtime.

Taylor’s apparent suspension comes a few weeks after a report emerged that defensive tackle Shy Tuttle, who sat out the UMass game with an “undisclosed” injury, had an orbital bone injury stemming from a fight with a teammate. Jones said Tuttle was injured when he “landed on a helmet” before launching into a diatribe about the media that included a “fake news” reference.

Jones has said quite a few strange things this season.

The Vols dropped to 3-2 and 0-2 in SEC play with a 41-0 blowout loss to Georgia. They will look to pick up their first conference win of the season on Saturday with the Gamecocks coming into Neyland Stadium for a noon kickoff.


– – – – – – –

Sam Cooper is a writer for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!