Florida has one of the best defenses in the nation. The front four is as athletic and quick as any in the country and the secondary boasts the best cornerback duo in the nation, but Jeff Driskel and the Gators’ offense will prevent them from winning more than seven games this year.
Miami didn’t defeat Will Muschamp’s Gators with a high-powered offensive attack — they were out gained by 201 yards — rather they forced Driskel, Matt Jones and Florida into five turnovers, three coming in the red zone.
You can have the best defense in the country, but if you are continually putting them in a short field you’re not just shooting yourself in the foot, you’re taking a rocket launcher to your lower extremities. Florida’s defense can hold teams to field goals at times in the short field, but what Driskel did today will have Muschamp and the Gator defense questioning if they can trust Driskel to lead them to an SEC title.
Driskel has 12 turnovers in his last seven games, and simply put, you can’t win in any conference, let alone the premier conference in the land, when your quarterback is handing the ball to the defense at this rate.
If you’re a Florida fan and you just saw Driskel force the ball into coverage instead of taking a sack, or throwing the ball away and having the defense intercept the pass and Florida leaving points on the board, you have to wonder if dissension is growing inside the locker room.
Jones was supposed to be a star in the making at running back, but after a viral infection sidelined him for a month and caused him to miss the opener, he looked rather pedestrian, averaging less than three yards per carry on 18 carries. He also fumbled, which led to the Hurricanes’ first touchdown.
If not for a blocked punt by Florida giving them the ball at the nine-yard line, the Gators wouldn’t have scored a touchdown until late in the game, with Miami playing a prevent defense.
The Gators look severely overrated entering the game with a No. 12 national ranking, and after the loss at the hands of Al Golden’s Hurricanes, they could drop out of the top 20.
If only Florida could drop Driskel from the top of the quarterback depth chart, they could contend for the eastern division this year with this championship caliber defense.