Best of the decade: OTs

Best of the decade: OTs

This is the eighth in a series of articles ranking Tennessee's best players of the decade 2000-2009. Today's focus: Offensive tackles.

1. ARRON SEARS: A starter at right tackle in 2004, this massive mauler moved to the all-important left tackle position and started in '05 and '06. Pegged All-SEC twice, the 6-3, 320-pounder was selected All-America as a senior. Known for his ferocious run blocking, Sears moved to guard after being tabbed by the Tampa Bay Bucs with the 35th overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft.

2. MICHAEL MUNOZ: A starter in 2000, 2002, 2003 and 2004 - the last three at left tackle - this 6-6, 300-pounder earned All-SEC and All-America honors as a senior. His biggest problem was trying to live up to the impossible-to-live-up-to legacy of his dad. Anthony Munoz may have been the greatest offensive lineman in football history, and Michael simply wasn't as bountifully gifted. Though smart and technically sound, young Munoz was plagued by serious knee problems that forced him to miss the 2001 season and probably cost him an NFL career.

3. ERIC YOUNG: A heralded recruit coming out of high school in Union, S.C., he started all 13 games at right tackle in 2006 and the first eight of 2007 at left tackle before being felled by a torn quad muscle. He was a major reason the '07 Vols allowed an NCAA-low 4 sacks. Despite missing half of his senior season, the 6-4, 305-pounder earned second-team All-SEC honors that fall.

4. CHRIS SCOTT: He started his last 39 games at Tennessee - the first eight at right guard and the final 31 at left tackle. After reporting to UT in the 370-pound range, he spent his first two years on The Hill trimming his waistline and honing his skills. He wound up playing at 6-5 and 346 pounds, proving to be the team's best pass protector in 2007, 2008 and 2009.

5. RAMON FOSTER: He started 28 career games, including all 14 in 2007 and all 12 in 2008 at right tackle. This 6-6, 325-pound behemoth had the distinction of twice being named Tennessee's most improved offensive player of spring practice (before his redshirt freshman season and before his junior season). A bona fide tough guy, he broke his thumb while warming up for the 2007 Vanderbilt game but still played every snap, earning recognition on ESPN sportscaster Mark May's All-MayDay Team.

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