The Florida Gators struggled last season, winning just four times in 12 games and collecting their first losing record in more than 30 years. Will Muschamp and his team had trouble getting anything to go right last season, as they struggled through injuries in addition to poor play.
One injury that made a huge difference last season for Florida was the broken leg suffered by starting quarterback Jeff Driskel in the Gators’ third game of the season, which turned out to be a win over the Tennessee Volunteers. However, it was a costly victory, as Driskel would miss the rest of the season, forcing Tyler Murphy into action.
Now, Driskel is healed and will be the starter for 2014. Murphy has transferred, knowing his playing time would be limited. And former offensive coordinator Brent Pease has been replaced by Kurt Roper, who will now assume the play calling duties, as well as mentoring Driskel.
Driskel’s loss was a blow to the 2013 Gators, but he wasn’t exactly lighting things up when he went down. In just more than two games last season, Driskel passed for 477 yards, but had three interceptions and just two touchdowns. In 2012, Driskel passed for 12 touchdowns with just five interceptions.
In 2014, Driskel will be asked to do more in Roper’s offense. And if he’s going to lead the Gators to any kind of meaningful success this season, he absolutely must improve on his career touchdown to interception ratio (14 TDs, 10 INTs at this point).
Driskel is certainly not the prototypical drop-back passer that’s going to have great passing numbers. But if Florida is to improve this season, Driskel absolutely must become more efficient.
Tim Letcher is a contributing writer for RantSports.com and a member of the Football Writers Association of America. Follow him on Twitter @TimLetcher , on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.