For a large part of the Florida Gators' 10-9 victory over the Tennessee Volunteers on Saturday, the offense was dreadful. It looked like what Jim Mora once complained about when he was the head coach of the New Orleans Saints all those years ago.
"We couldn't do, diddly poo offensively. We couldn't make a first down. We couldn't run the ball, we didn't try to run the ball. We couldn't complete a pass. We sucked."
Sounds about right, doesn't it?
Then came in Treon Harris and everything changed.
His stats aren't all that impressive, but that's not point. He finished the game with 17 yards passing on four attempts while completing two of them. He would add 24 yards on four carries to round things out, but his presence on the field was much more important.
The whole mood of the Gators' offense seemed to change for the better. The Gators were able to move the ball down the field and even took advantage of a short field for the only touchdown of the day. Something that seemed impossible just a short time prior.
Play No. 1: Harris passes to Matt Jones for 12 yards
Matt Jones will pretend to block for a second, before heading out as Harris' safety net. During that time, Harris will scan the field quickly before deciding on dumping the ball off to Jones for the safe play.
Somehow, Jones goes unaccounted for by the linebackers as he sneaks out of the backfield. They are all focused on what Harris is doing that Jones gets out in the open.
By the time the linebacker begins to track down Jones, it's too late. At this moment Harris sees him and will get off the throw. The defender is a good five yards away from the play at this time.
The throw arrives perfectly and hits Jones in stride. First down Gators as Harris and the Gators are off to a great start to the 4th quarter.
Play No. 2: Harris runs for 10 yards
The cloud cover in this game was ridiculous, but I wasn't aware that it affected the viewing on the television. But then again, Brent Musburger called this game? That's horrible.
As for this play, Harris is going to keep this ball all the way. A designed quarterback run right up the middle and the offensive line blocks perfectly.
Just after the snap there are only two blockers that aren't engaged with a defender, but that will happen soon enough. One of the best linebackers in the country, AJ Johnson, is in the middle of the field and he's about to be taken out of the play by Chaz Green.
Look at this picture!
The only person for the Gators who isn't blocking at the moment is Jones, but that's because he just hasn't found anybody yet. I do wonder though, that if Harris would have followed Jones instead of cutting to the left what would have happened?
Harris will cut to the inside here, but the play will end at the first down line.
Like I said and we've all discussed by now, Harris' stats weren't all that impressive. But that's not the point. He provided a much needed spark to a lifeless offense in much need of one. In is in my opinion, that despite probably not being ready to do so, Harris should be the starting quarterback moving forward.
As for the rest of the Theater of Operations posts, we'll get to the defense in double posts tomorrow. There's plenty of stuff to cover there, as the defense is probably the largest reason the Gators were able to extend their streak over the Vols to ten games.