KNOXVILLE TN - SEPTEMBER 18: Jeff Demps #2 of the Florida Gators oruns against the Tennessee Volunteers at Neyland Stadium on September 18 2010 in Knoxville Tennessee. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
During Dan Mullen's time in Gainesville, the Gators were criticized for relying too much on Percy Harvin. But at least you knew Percy was getting the ball. Better than Steve Addazio seemingly using random personnel packages for the same running plays.
Of course, since we are Gators fans, we cannot tolerate an offense that driving less than 100mph. The Gators have yet to score in the first quarter and have a 41 percent conversion rate on 3rd down, which is 60th nationally. UF needs to score early and finish drives with 3rd down conversions leading to seven points. Finishing drives was the problem last year too; not enough touchdowns and too many field goals.
Florida needs go-to players, just as Harvin was. Here are our candidates. Drop yours in the comments.
Jeffery Demps: Clearly, the Gators have a lot of trust in Demps as he has 59 touches this season (45 rush, 8 catch, 6 return) for 590 yards. Averaging 10 yards a touch is a big deal, but that number is inflated by 221 return yardage. If the Gators want to increase Demps' effectiveness running the ball, they need to pull him back from kick returns. Demps is a more refined back this season with more patience heading into the line and is better catching the ball.
Mike Gillislee: Has Gillislee made a bad play yet? Maybe that is because he only has 20 touches; 18 rush and 2 returns. Gillislee is a nice back who will blow up a defender, which Demps cannot do. His 65 yards on kick returns is also evidence he has open field speed, and should be enough to lighten the load on Demps. Gillislee might not be a go-to-guy because he has no catches this season and only one catch in 2009. Running the ball however, Gillislee should get more touches.
Omarius Hines Bandwagon: When you have a freakish tight end/wide receiver/H-back (?) GET HIM THE BALL. Hines could improve his blocking (since he is being subbed for an extra tackle on some running downs), but Hines should have a permanent place on the field. Other than his 36-yard fake punt return, Hines has seven catches for 70 yards and a score. He needs 5-6 catches a game. Hines can take the Aaron Hernandez role of taking the tight end option pitch and being a security blanket for John Brantley. Also, we saw how Hines can rumble. Why not make him an H-back and get him reps out of the backfield? I realize this would involve writing new plays, and Addazio might not be capable of that, but it would be nice to have some creative plays.
Carl Moore: He only has seven catches, but Moore is playing like Manny Ramirez looking for a new contract. Finally healthy, Moore has pulled down a few wild passes from Brantley while improving his blocking enough to remain on the field. A 6-foot-4, Moore can be the outside option in the red zone, sending him into the corners for a jump ball. I'm guilty of assuming Moore would continue to disappoint (no catches against Miami-OH), but his activity the last two weeks is a sign of a man ready to take a larger role.
I think Urban Meyer and Addazio know the talent they have. But they also have to realize that if UF is going to win the division, there need to be certain guys who get the largest share of touches.