Week one for the Florida Gators was a disaster as Michigan Wolverines throttled the Gators 33-17. While it’s only week one, the Gators have a lot of work to improve, especially on offense. Florida’s offense hasn’t looked that bad since Will Muschamp was head coach. There is a lot of negativity around this program and its fan base but it’s not all bad. Here are the wins and losses for the Florida Gators from their week one loss to Michigan.
Horrible play calling
One of the main reasons Florida’s offense was so atrocious was due to the vanilla play calling. Florida’s offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier received a lot of heat for being so predictable against the Wolverines. The offense greatly struggled moving the ball as they only produced 192 yards of total offense. To make matters worse, their offense only put up three total points as the other fourteen points were produced by two defensive pick sixes by Duke Dawson and C.J. Henderson. Running game was horrendous, your playmakers didn’t get many touches and you played the wrong people on offense. The Gators will play against Northern Colorado this Saturday but have a potent Tennessee Volunteers the following week. Florida shouldn’t have any issues this week but they need to have a better game plan and execute at a higher level for Tennessee, if they expect to win.
Offensive line woes
The Florida Gators offensive line was expected to be one of the team’s strengths, with key starters returning like Martez Ivey, Jawaan Taylor and T.J. McCoy. All those high expectations were not met against the Wolverines as the Michigan defense constantly got into Florida’s backfield in less than two seconds. Nobody could hold their blocks and some of the Wolverine’s defensive players had free routes directly to the Gator quarterbacks. Michigan’s defensive line might be one of the top in the country but that’s not a good excuse for what happened last Saturday. Either this offensive line makes changes or Florida’s quarterbacks will be running for their lives all season long.
Didn’t get it to your playmakers
Going into the season, the Florida coaching staff talked a lot how many playmakers they have on offense. McElwain always mentioned how explosive Kadarius Toney and Dre Massey were during camp. Massey and Toney had three receptions for 29 yards combined and they were only targeted three times. The “Get it to” list was absolutely nowhere to be found. Part of that could have been the offensive line but at some point Nussmeier has to make adjustments and find other ways to get the ball in playmaker’s hands. There’s no doubt Toney and Massey are talented but it’s up to the coaching staff to call the right plays. You can have a tremendously talented team but if your play calling isn’t up to standards, the offense would move the ball and they won’t put any points on the board.
Feleipe Franks could be the future
With a bunch of negativity around the Florida Gators, there are some positives to talk about after the loss to Michigan. The first one is Feleipe Franks. While his stats don’t look impressive, the redshirt-freshman had a pretty solid game. Franks connected with Josh Hammond for a 34 yard competition in the opening series which led to the only scoring drive. Franks showed his athleticism as he can move in the pocket and take off and run when necessary. The redshirt-freshman did a pretty decent job for his first collegiate game especially against Michigan. Franks didn’t get a lot of help from his offensive line as he was constantly under pressure. If the offensive line could give Franks time, he could show off that big arm and hit his receivers for big gains. Feleipe Franks might be the quarterback Florida fans have been waiting for.
Florida’s secondary will be fine
The only two touchdowns Florida had against Michigan were thanks to Florida’s secondary. Senior CB Duke Dawson and freshman CB C.J. Henderson both had pick sixes in the second quarter which got Florida back in the game. Outside of the two pick sixes, the Florida secondary was still pretty good. It might be as good as what they had last year but it doesn’t seem to be much of a drop off. The Florida Gators secondary has been called Defensive Backs University aka “DBU” for all the talent they produce at cornerback and safety. With freshmen like Marco Wilson. C.J. Henderson and Shawn Davis, the “DBU” tradition at Florida should be just fine. Florida might have a few future stars in their secondary.