Bits & Pieces: Florida vs. Tennessee

Discussion in 'Main Sports Forum' started by cover2, Sep 26, 2021.

  1. cover2

    cover2 I've grown old
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    Saturday was a good day to be Emory Jones. Fresh off the heels of a near miss against Bama and amid a quarterback controversy between him and phenom Anthony Richardson, Jones turned in a solid performance against Tennessee, leading the Gators to a 38-14 victory. In doing so, Jones was 21/27 passing for 209 yards, 2 TDs, and NO INTs. He also had a team-leading 144 yds rushing on 15 carries. 353 yds of total offense isn’t shabby and it was clear that Jones was feeling more comfortable as “the man,” exploiting the Vols attention to the rest of our backfield and patiently making the throws that UT allowed in the seams and flats. There’s still no vertical stretch and Emory remains too flat-footed in the pocket, but for a Saturday at least, he avoided the “Bama Hangover” (a term stolen from the TV guys) and led the Gators to an always appreciated, if not expected, win against the Volunteers.

    Meanwhile, after three fairly solid quarters against Bama last week, the Gators’ secondary reverted to their old ways, allowing open receivers behind them, missing tackles, and giving up two first half passing TDs. Had the Vols a better QB, the penciled in victory might not have been. I can breathe a little easier now, but on the Vols second TD, I couldn’t help but laugh (between cuss words) at how bad our DB looked pursuing the receiver who had run past him…

    upload_2021-9-26_7-3-56.gif

    I’m quite certain that a lot of it had to do with having played some better last week, but the fact remains that we are not “DBU” and the route recognition skills nor the ability to process calls and carry out assignments remains underdeveloped. Thank goodness for the front 6/7.

    *We amassed over 500 yds of offense, 283 rushing and 222 passing and there’s some cause to celebrate our potency and consistency. However, we allowed 423 total yds, 275 passing and 148 rushing…against the inferior Vols. Maybe there was a touch of the “Bama Hangover?” Todd, is that you?

    *And while I’m on Grantham, I don’t fault him quite as much for some of his blitz calls. I mean, for two weeks now, we’ve faced relatively inexperienced QBs and finding ways to disrupt their timing and put pressure on them is Defensive Football 101. But Great Day, make sure you’ve got people in the secondary that can at least keep the receivers in front of them. It is maddening that this issue prevails year after year. I do fault Todd for allowing this to continue.

    *For not having a stable of highly touted LBs and having lost arguably our best guy to a torn bicep, we’re getting some decent play from them. It doesn’t hurt that our front four are pretty solid, even Brenton Cox looked good against the run, but Moon, Diabate, et al are flowing to the ball and cleaning things up. Heaven forbid that these guys don’t stay healthy.

    *Hated that Copeland got stripped while fighting for some YAC. Had that turnover not occurred and we go on to punch it in, we might’ve scored 50. As it stands, a three TD margin was not bad, even if we might have been left wanting more. A team that is strong running the ball and average passing usually isn’t big strike.

    *How about Mullen with a little trickeration?! That play was almost as if a fan had won some sort of radio station sweepstakes and got to call one play during the game. Or maybe SOS dropped by Mullen’s office for a little chalk talk? Any who, it was kinda fun and didn’t backfire.

    *A new kicker after Bama wasn’t surprising and he did make all of his PATs and a FG attempt. Wish we could see some touchbacks on the kickoffs though. There was also a new KO return guy. Expected moves were good to see, however insignificant that may seem ;)

    *We’ve got three pretty good backs, four if you count Emory, and I’m pleased that we are able to grind out yardage. It is demoralizing to the opposition and is due in large part to an improved OL. The Vols were pretty good in spots accounting for Davis, Pierce, and Wright, but not so much for Emory. We’re good as long as we don’t lay the ball down and the passing game progresses. We’ll soon face some teams that can take the run away and we’ll have to be able to counter vertically.

    *I have to give Rick Wells a shout. I’ve wondered how he has become a starting receiver for us, but he’s progressed and yesterday made a very nice catch going out of bounds, getting a foot down on the dead run. At some point this year, he and the other receivers will have to play a bigger part in the offense. I’m glad he’s moving upward.

    I still have feelings that Richardson is the future. He appears, in a short sample size, to have the arm and moxie that we all want in a QB. But despite those feelings, I am also happy that Emory has helped ease my mind some with his ability to run the offense, gain yardage and score points that was an improvement over last week. I am concerned with the passing game, though he did look more comfortable yesterday. He’s just not a pocket passer and though he had a couple of nice look-offs yesterday, it’s doubtful at this point that he’ll ever consistently read progression beyond the first one or two routes. Maybe Dan will have that two-headed QB at some point? At any rate, Emory is in a lot of ways both a feel good story and a throwback. It’s hard not to admire a kid these days, a QB at that, who waits for his turn and when he gets it he does good things, the PAT play against Bama notwithstanding.

    Improvement each week will be the name of the game for #5. That he hasn’t turtled up in the face of the calls for Richardson is a positive. A lesser guy would have. I posted this on here before, but an old coaching friend in Heard County told me when we signed Emory that we got not only a great athlete and QB, but a great kid who was a leader and wouldn’t embarrass us. So far he’s been right. The next step, of course, is to see if the improvement continues against Kentucky on the road. Go Gators!

    :chomp:
     
    #1 cover2, Sep 26, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2021
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    • GatorJ

      GatorJ Hopeful
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      EJ was efficient. He needs to look downfield more. If he could make teams pay with Go routes, this offense would be very difficult to stop.
       
      • GatorJ

        GatorJ Hopeful
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        Also, Mullen said in his presser that Richardson was 100% for this game. Friday was the 1st day he was able to run full speed. He said he was happy because that week should prevent any setbacks.
         
        • GR8 2B

          GR8 2B A Florida Gator
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          Great write-up, cover, as always!
           
          • alcoholica

            alcoholica I'm what Willis was talking about
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            Give credit where it's due. The OL has significantly improved, despite not having big named recruits. This is what Hevesy was brought in to do, mesh an OL to Mullen's QB centric running offense. Also give credit to @Swamp Donkey who said that the OL would play much better in a traditional Mullen offense.
             
            • Mr2Bits

              Mr2Bits Member
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              Fat Todd needs to remind our D that we need to wake the **** up in the first half….we also only have 1 int on the entire season, this ship is going to sail sooner rather than later!
               
              #6 Mr2Bits, Sep 26, 2021
              Last edited: Sep 26, 2021
              • rogdochar

                rogdochar Senior Member
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                Our WRs are sneaking into prominence ... all together. RBs are ready to rip. Emory's running will be a focus for defenses from now on. The 47 yard FG was straight & true. Emory needs to speed up his delivery before something bad happens.? We need to create better TE play. We are marching off enough big-chunk yardage that we hardly look like we're trying.

                Cover II, sum of your pieces = good.
                 
                • cover2

                  cover2 I've grown old
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                  Agreed. The best teams always have a greater takeaway to giveaway ratio. This point belies a lack of aggression, particularly in our secondary. Likely caused by paralysis by analysis.
                   
                  • Himey

                    Himey Super Important Member
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                    Went to the game last night. I don’t like how they changed the voice-over on the “to be a Gator” video before kickoff. WTH? Also, they replaced the audio recording of the original voice of “Here comes the Gators!” Double WTH?! The replacements are awful.
                     
                    • AlexDaGator

                      AlexDaGator The Hammer of Thor
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                      Doering said the trick play was an SOS play. He said we scored a TD against Bama in the SEC Championship game using that play in the 90s.

                      Alex.
                       
                      • cover2

                        cover2 I've grown old
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                        Wasn’t Doering the guy who threw it?
                         
                        • NavetG8r

                          NavetG8r Stupid
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                          Enjoyed the read C2. Here is where I eat a little crow this morning. I said before the season got started that I expected EJ to be a 55% completion rate QB and no better, but his legs would make plays for us at times. Well, I had a lot of it right, but his completion % has been better than I expected so it's only fair I give him his due props. He's not what I'd consider a difference maker at QB, but he's solid and apparently Mullen feels he gets the offense in the right plays for the looks the defenses are giving us so that's gotta count for something too. I still think AR is the kind of guy that IS a difference maker. We'll have to see how this plays out.
                           
                          • CGgater

                            CGgater Gainesville Native
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                            Great job as always, cover!

                            Overall positive, especially your points about EJ, his progress and character.

                            There were too many running plays where our d looked softer than pee wee league up the middle. Time for tackling fundamentals and TOUGHNESS… again… Maybe their guy was just a really tough runner, but he shouldn’t be tough enough to carry 2-3 defenders like he’s Derrick Henry. This just in… granthem still sucks.

                            Still, it’s always good to beat tinerc.

                            Go Gators!!!
                             
                            • Thought Criminal

                              Thought Criminal Well-Known Member

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                              The new voiceover is Thaddeus Bullard, and it's awesome.
                               
                              • soflagator

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                                Yes. To Aubrey Hill. Didn’t score but got us inside the 10 and set up the TD which went to Doering.
                                 
                                • itsgr82bag8r

                                  itsgr82bag8r Political Forum Fire Starter
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                                  Seems like I remember Aubrey Hill involved in one of those against Bama in the SECCG….


                                  Edit: :lol: Sofla just beat me to it!
                                   
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                                  • Gator By Marriage

                                    Gator By Marriage A convert to Gatorism
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                                    Great write up @cover2 I particularly agree with your comments about the defensive backfield. I can’t help but wonder what the effect was of Kaiir Elam’s absence, but he would not have been able to get his teammates to take better angles or tackle better. Mrs G and I happened to be at the game last night and were sitting in the south end zone. They’re great seats in many ways, but I sometimes have trouble seeing some of what’s happening vs TV. (Though often you can see quite a bit that you can’t see on TV!)

                                    Your points about Emory were right on as well. When you look at the stat sheet, you think, wow; great game for EJ. Somehow in person, it just doesn’t “feel” that way. (At one point early in 2nd q, my son who was in the student section, sent me a text stating “I hope u agree that Emory is much more frustrating in person.” I found myself agreeing.) At different times in the game, I heard various folks around me yelling or just grumbling, for AR. And yet, 21 of 27 for 209 and 2 TDs (and, critically, zero picks) along with 15 carries for 144 yds is nothing to be ashamed of. I don’t recall any QB of ours having a stat line like that since Tebow.

                                    One last question about the trick play TD: Is that the same play we ran against Cowbell in CDM’s first season where Kadarius hit Moral Stephens for a TD? From my vantage point it looked pretty similar, but I missed the replay. (I was busy high fiving complete strangers.)
                                     
                                    • itsgr82bag8r

                                      itsgr82bag8r Political Forum Fire Starter
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                                      Then they need to have Lawrence Wright record “If you ain’t a Gator, you’re Gator bait”. :waiting:
                                       
                                      • NVAGATOR86

                                        NVAGATOR86 Well-Known Member
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                                        Cover , good write up as usual. I agree with your comments on EJ and he appears to be growing into his leadership role. The first half was as expected and the team primarily the defense came out flat and disorganized. I heard the talking heads mention that we were missing personnel in the secondary but did not get the details. On the 75 yard UT TD I realized that Elam was out. How do you get beat that bad in man to man coverage? It looked like we lightened up on the jumbo D line and played the smaller LB/ Buck/DE scheme in response to Hookers mobility. He was pretty much shut down in the second half.
                                        Of course we also got gashed up the middle and off tackle by UTs fast backs. I did see big boy Watson in late but no Truesdell? agree with you on the WR's and even Shorter stepped up most of the night. The OL guys are playing hurt and tough. Credit that group for another big time performance.
                                         
                                        • Gatormac2112

                                          Gatormac2112 The Voice of Reason
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                                          Nice write up cover, agree with all of it! Emory is doing everything he needs to do to keep the offense moving, but if he wasn't late on so many throws we could be explosive. Hopefully more time leading this team will fix that.
                                           

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