Sunday, September 27, 2015

Gators 28, Tennessee 27 - My Two Bits

First, if you haven't watched the highlight along with the Voice of the Gators Mick Hubert's call of the gamewinning touchdown, do that now. It's magic.

My Two Bits on the Game
DMR
Would it surprise you to know that Demarcus Robinson has led the team in receptions in each of their four games this season? It surprised me. Part of that is because although he leads the team in receptions, he ranks third in yards, his long is only 17 and he has just one TD. Against Tennessee, he again led the team in receptions (six), but five of those came in the second half, including four in the TD drive that brought the Gators to within six. He also had a really, really bad drop on the gamewinning drive, setting up the eventual fourth and 14. The Gators need him to be a dominant receiver throughout the game, not just in one drive. He can be more than a series-changing receiver; he can be a game-changing receiver.

That Said...
That said, it was nice to see the Gators win thanks to a passing offense and not just defense and run the ball enough to run out the clock. The final two drives showed what this offense could be, and hopefully the team can build off of that and start putting those types of drives together throughout the game. The 17-play, 86-yard drive that brought UF to within six was really a thing of beauty.

QB Play
In terms of Will Grier's development, it was probably good that Treon Harris was suspended, because it meant that Grier was staying in the game no matter what. I think anyone watching that game had the sense that Grier was floundering, and probably would have been pulled had Harris been available. But Grier stayed in and finally found his rhythm in those final two drives - hopefully that is a sign of things to come.

Timeout
I get why Coach McElwain called timeout right as Tennessee kicker Aaron Medley attempted the possible gamewinning field goal. But as I said screamed at my tv at the time, WHY WOULD YOU ALLOW MEDLEY TO SEE WHAT HE NEEDS TO DO TO MAKE THE KICK?!? He had never - repeat, NEVER - attempted a kick longer than 50 yards before in his career. I'm sure he's kicked them in practice/pre-game, but there's no way that's the same as during a game. So he probably had no idea how much he needed to put into that kick, and you know I'm right because he was well short on his first attempt. But thanks to McElwain's timeout, Medley was able to adjust, and his second attempt had the leg but was thankfully just wide. To my recollection, Mike Shanahan popularized the "call a timeout right before the snap on a field goal attempt so that the kicker kicks it but it doesn't count" strategy, but I wouldn't have used it in this situation. I would either have not called a timeout at all, or called a timeout well before the snap to make Medley think about it longer.

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