Derek Dooley chose the conservative approach.
Citing a veteran running back, a more experienced offensive line and a deeper stable of rushers to help carry the load, the Tennessee coach made clear he expected his ground game to be improved and that it would be a letdown if it wasn't.
Quarterback Tyler Bray took a much more aggressive style in breaking down the offense.
The Vols quarterback also had some examples to support his stance, rattling off the credentials of the top three tailbacks on the depth chart and praising the offensive line as well.
The message was the same after practice on Tuesday, but it was delivered in widely different ways.
"We can run the ball pretty much whenever we want — on any down," Bray said. "I mean, we have Tauren (Poole), who is a strong and fast back. We have Marlin (Lane), who's quick. We have Rajion (Neal), he's quick, and the offensive line has been blocking well."
The Vols also have Tom Smith back in the fold, who, like Neal, has missed time in camp with a knee injury that slowed both down for a couple weeks.
Collectively that personnel has raised the bar for a rushing attack that was far and away the least productive in the SEC last year, finishing nearly 30 yards behind Vanderbilt at the bottom of the rankings with just 109 yards per game.
"I'm hoping it's improved, and it should be," Dooley said. "No. 1, we've got more guys who have played on the offensive line who we feel like are going to be really good players for us. That's No. 1. Then we also have a guy who ran for over 1,000 yards last year, which last year he hadn't. No. 3, we feel like we have a little better stable of backups to help him.
"Given all that, we should be running the ball better. I'll be disappointed if we don't."
Each of those factors would seem to point to a more consistent offense on the ground, which also could pay dividends for the passing game as well.
The relative abundance of options in the backfield could be the biggest help, particularly for Poole after having to carry much of the load last season. With 204 carries, the senior logged exactly half of the attempts for the Vols in his first campaign as the feature back, and Dooley has made clear he'd like to distribute some of those touches elsewhere to keep Poole fresh.
"Marlin is going to play, and he's going to play a lot," Dooley said. "Rajion, we'll try to figure it out. Rajion has missed a lot.
"But we'll try to integrate him into the game, shape some plays for him a little bit and see how he goes."
Early Returns: Two up, two down for Dooley.
Both of the first two workouts of game week for the Vols have come with some positive reviews afterward, and the practice field seemed to buzz even before the speakers were blasting some hip-hop music during an early stretching period.
"We had another good day," Dooley said. "These days, the emphasis is third down and red area. Most of the physical work starts getting back down and it becomes a bigger investment on the mental preparation.
"Two good days of work, and we head into tomorrow (focusing on) moving the field."
Perfect Catch: The two-deep includes his name.
The coaching staff has praised his quick transition to wide receiver.
Now even some decorated teammates at his new position are offering rave reviews for converted defensive back Anthony Anderson.
"Man, I think he's real good at receiver," Justin Hunter said. "I think he should have been with us awhile back — like in the spring. He's come (in) and made a big impact.
"He's making hard catches that some of us couldn't make."