QB Jeff Driskel‘s role in the Florida Gator offense is changing for the better, according to new offensive coordinator Kurt Roper.
Addressing Florida’s abysmal offensive performance in 2013, Driskel and Roper indicated at SEC Media Days that the gameplan has done a 180 in terms of tempo and, more importantly, the responsibilities Driskel will have under center. Not only will Driskel influence an uptempo running game, he will be depended upon to handle protections as well.
The thought is that Driskel will be able to play faster and protect himself because he will know firsthand where his protection may be weaker. Ball release, footwork and quick decision-making will be the order of the day from now on. Possession football and clock control is gone out the window, and Driskel seems excited for the change.
Originally signed to play in Urban Meyer‘s spread, Driskel is better suited for this type of offense. Roper indicated that his role will resemble that of Peyton Manning, where front calls are made by the quarterback.
“I think that is one of the things that is different in this system,” said Roper. “Before I think the line handled all protections.”
The days of Florida’s offense being mired in the mud appear to be over. With a strong offensive line returning and playmakers like receivers Andre Debose and Demarcus Robinson roaming the perimeter, Driskel should have no trouble moving the ball. After dropping some pounds to increase his mobility and working on his release for touch throws downfield, the sky is the limit for the Gator offense.
When the Gators take the field on Aug. 30 against Idaho, Driskel will be on the move, and so will the Gator offense. Florida fans will be happy to see speed return to The Swamp, on all fronts.