When Tim Tebow's pass clanged off Deonte Thompson's pads early in the first quarter, thoughts of a shallow depth chart and games lost danced in the heads of Gator fans. But Thompson would eventually catch two touchdowns, Omarius Hines spent a second week making the case for being a top-4 guy, and the defense looked focused and in peak condition for next week's Hate Bowl 2009 against Tennessee. The Gators' 56-6 win against Troy was efficient and seemed to answer some questions still out there. With Florida rushing for 291 against a decent front seven for Troy, the Gators seem to be clicking, even if the wet track led to three fumbles.
The Gators showed a little bit more than they did last week; Johnny Brantley was under center, Tebow threw an incomplete pass on a self play-action at the goal line. The defense seemed to have tried a few exotic formations, putting three linemen on the ground and Carlos Dunlap and Jaye Howard standing up in the interior. For Charlie Strong, any combination for him seems to equal dominance. A wealth of riches on defense allows the Gators to experiment with different sets and personnel groups. You could easily see that from last week to today.
If Tennessee can take anything from this game it is that Florida's receivers (not named Cooper or Hernandez) have not faced a physical secondary and Tebow is still willing to hold the ball, waiting for the big play (that's why he fumbled). But there is a lot of the playbook still in Meyer's pocket and Tennessee has no idea what is coming.