As spring ball approaches, there is a quarterback competition brewing in Gainesville to see who will lead the team into the 2018 season. Who projects to be the Florida Gators’ future star?
Pre-Camp Analysis (Florida Gators Spring Ball)
Head Coach Dan Mullen has been known to develop quarterbacks into respectable starters ever since his early days with the Florida Gators under then former coach Urban Meyer and during his tenure at Mississippi State University. An important factor to assess is the type of quarterback Mullen looks to execute his spread offense.
In successful seasons, Mullen always had a big, mobile quarterback that wasn’t prototypical. Tim Tebow and Dak Prescott are premier products of his philosophy. Both were powerful runners who can either throw, pitch or run the option. Even though they’re not the most accurate quarterbacks they put the ball where it needs to be. The same can be said for current Mississippi State QB Nick Fitzgerald.
In order for the Florida Gators’ offense to propel, Dan Mullen and Offensive Coordinator Brian Jenkins need to figure out who best fits the same mold of player. With the offense predicated out of a hybrid spread/pistol scheme, the Gators’ for quarterback must take the mantle of restoring the pride of Gainesville. From outside conversations, the quarterback competition is wide open. If so, who will take the reins? So far there are three quarterbacks that are in the running for the job, Kyle Trask, Feleipe Franks and Emory Jones.
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The Florida Gators are tasked with analyzing and assessing three quarterbacks who can possibly bring them back to prominence. Kyle Trask is a familiar name fans know of. Unfortunately, he missed last season due to a knee injury. The tape on him speaks volumes as he has a big arm and is pretty accurate in the intermediate and deep levels. Hopefully, he returns healthy and earns his keep.
Feleipe Franks is the incumbent quarterback who struggled mightily last season but has game experience. Majority of his struggles can be contributed to the overall struggles of the offense. But, he was wildly inaccurate throughout the season and was benched for Luke Del Rio to spark the team. He has the prototypical size (6’6″) and strength but has to work on getting the ball to the intended target this offseason. I’m pretty sure Dan and Brian are going to work with him a lot.
The star of this group that may lead the way this season is the incoming freshman, Emory Jones. Jones is a phenomenal athlete that fits the ideal quarterback that Coach Mullen’s wants. He is a dual-option player who can eventually grow into becoming a prime star in the SEC East.
Final Analysis of the Gators’ future
Overall, the team is in very good hands with the level of talent at the position. I envision Feleipe Franks winning out and starting the season on opening day.
The team is stacked with immense talent at all skill positions. The Gators just need the right quarterback to lead the way.
The coverage of this focus will be ongoing throughout spring training.