Five games into the season is enough time to see the strengths and weaknesses of the Florida Gators. It's also enough time to hope things start changing enough to get us a SEC title. Of course all of these are the wishes of a 23 year old who just happens to have a blog. So leave your suggestions or insults about my level of intelligence in the comments.
1. CI Baby gets five catches for 75 yards.
The kid is 6-4, 230 and should be thrown at all the time. He has an NFL body and is becoming a polished WR/TE. But he can't continue that progress unless he has plays called for him (like Percy) or Tebow checks down to him. (He will be referred to as CI Baby from now on because that is what we yell when he makes a catch.)
2. Lou Murphy and Bubba become legit threats on the edge.
LSU is good enough to lock up Percy either in a double team or by sliding a safety to shadow him. If Tebow stays disciplined and can get the time to look for Murphy and Caldwell that could free Percy late in the game.
3. Tebow runs as the closer.
Tebow is a rare talent, but that is no excuse to run him 17 times a game. Having him blow holes in the fourth quarter is a huge advantage, but he's already taken a lot of punishment in the first half. Protecting him is essential because everyone is tackling him low. One wandering helmet or shoulder into the wrong spot could mean the Cam Newton Experience. Run Tebow late when a defense can't stop him. Give Moore the early carries.
4. No slow play in the first quarter.
In poker, to slow play is to bet as if you don't have the advantage and is used to lure in weak hands and trap them. This is fine if you're in a neighborhood game, but not if you're calling plays for the Florida Gators. Since the start of SEC play, UF has only scored 14 points in the first quarter (both TDs against UT, and one of those was a punt return). It's unrealistic to think UF can drop 21 in the first quarter at LSU, but going three-and-out cannot become a habit.
5. Disciplined linebackers.
This was supposed to be a great unit, but they haven't met expectations. Facing the run, they have been very good. With the exception of a few plays in the Auburn game, they plug gaps and pursue the ball. But because they are so good at stopping the run, they jump on the play action fake. With the zone that UF is running, a few steps towards the line can make a big difference in where there are holes in the zone.
6. More blitzing.
The d-line is stuffing the run because they can take up lineman and slide into the gap. But, they don't have the technique or strength to get in the backfield (Torrey Davis is the only DT with a sack). Don't bring a LB who has to either find a seam to rush the middle or swing around. Take a DB and bring him in off the corner or out of slot coverage. I know the Gators need seven or eight in coverage, but getting a hand in the QBs face needs to happen. Hopefully, the four sacks in the Auburn game is a starting point.
7. Our man Timmy C. stays safe.
Our Gainesville ground man is in New Orleans Friday night and going to the game Saturday. (We spent New Year's in New Orleans, so we told Tim to bring an extra set of shoes to wear on Bourbon Street and to stop at a jazz club.) For the game, he's got front row seats on the 35, which will hopefully bring the Gators good luck. Tim is 6-2 in road games. And he needs another road win. Tim and his girlfriend are Mets fans.