Florida vs. Toledo, Theater of Operations: Mack Brown's breakthrough performance

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

With Matt Jones out with a viral infection, Mack Brown stepped up in a big way with over 100 rushing yards and two touchdowns.

Mack Brown officially introduced himself to the college football world yesterday against the Toledo Rockets, and he impressed. Brown, who got the start at running back because first-team running back Matt Jones was out due to a viral bug, took advantage of opportunity and didn't look back.

On the day, Brown had 25 carries for 112 yards and two touchdowns, with 97 of those yards coming in the first half. Brown's average of 4.5 yards per carry is also very solid and shows that Brown just might be a very capable backup to Jones.

With good vision and patience, Brown looked to show the coaching staff and the Gator Nation that he's finally ready to shoulder the load as the Gators' main option at running back. Do we have a running back controversy? No. But it's very nice to know that we've got a capable backup just in case his number is called again.

Play No. 1: Brown's 23-yard run in the 1st quarter

Uftol1_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

A slightly different look from the Gators out of the gate here, as the norm for a Brent Pease offense isn't out of the shotgun but I like this formation for one reason: It gives the offensive line time to build their blocks before the running back gets to the line.

Brown is just going to take the handoff and head right into the middle of the line behind the right guard.

Uftol2_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

Great blocking the offensive line and receivers on the play. It appeared to me that this offensive line is more comfortable on running plays than they are on passing plays.

At this point there is one defender free (green circle), but as Brown gets to the hole he'll make that linebacker miss.

Uftol3_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

It was on this run that Brown first showed the intangibles of his ever-growing skill set. The cut to the left throws the defensive back off balance and allows for the extra 13 yards that were gained on the play.

I don't think that Brown is as hard a runner through the tackles as Jones, but we'll see if that can be improved upon as the season wears on.

Play No. 2: Brown's one-yard touchdown run

Uftol4_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

For Brown's first touchdown (and the Gators' first touchdown on their season-opening drive since Tim Tebow was quarterback in 2009), the Gators relied on great blocking overall. But the gold star goes to fullback Hunter Joyer.

Joyer gets the key block around the 2, and that will allow Brown to get into the end zone for the touchdown.

Uftol5_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

Joyer gets his block (yellow square), but there is still one defender free. That defender, however, thinks that Brown is going to take the play outside the tackle box. Brown has other ideas. For a brief moment there is a hole between Joyer and the left tackle, and Brown is there to take advantage.

Uftol6_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

Brown is able to get the touchdown without being touched. At all.

Play No. 3: Brown's 14-yard touchdown run

Uftol7_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

With the same formation used in the play above, the Gators are going to rely heavily on Joyer to get the lead block but he's not the only one this time. Kyle Koehne will be pulling from the right side for the line and he'll head left to pick up whichever defender Joyer is unable to get.

Uftol8_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

Both Joyer and Koehne get their blocks at the line of scrimmage, and that allows Brown to hit the hole and head towards the second level of the defense. Some great blocks in the secondary allow for this as well, and that shouldn't go unnoticed.

Uftol9_medium

(Photo courtesy of ESPN)

Even though Brown was tackled at the first down line, the way he was tackled caused him to fall onto and slide over at least two defenders, and he never touched the ground until he was in the endzone.

I was kind of surprised that this play wasn't reviewed extensively just to be sure because all plays like this seem to be, but I'll take it. Brown was due a break or two and this certainly qualifies.

We'll get to the rest of the game (probably something like a breakdown of the rest of the offense and then the defense) within the next couple of days, so fear not, Jeff Driskel's fumble that was the result of a missed block by Brown won't go unnoticed.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Alligator Army

You must be a member of Alligator Army to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Alligator Army. You should read them.

Join Alligator Army

You must be a member of Alligator Army to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Alligator Army. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker