As Mark Miller wrote earlier, the real schedule begins this Saturday in Death Valley. The Florida Gators football team travels to Baton Rouge to be houseguests of the Louisiana State Tigers. This is Florida’s first trip back to Baton Rouge since a 41-11 drubbing in Will Muschamp’s first season as head coach.
Before the Gators tackle the Tigers, I take on the mailbag, a worthy opponent in itself.
Here we go:
Since the running game hasn’t shown any consistency or big play ability lately, do you think LSU will flood the defensive backfield, shutting down Murphy’s passing lanes and invite the run? Or will they stack the box and put it all on Murphy’s arm and legs? -K9Gator
Despite the running attack being more bark than bite so far this season, that doesn’t change Florida’s identity as a football team and LSU knows that. The Tigers will stack the box and try to make Florida one dimensional.
Other than Florida’s defensive backs against LSU’s stud receivers, what’s the most important position matchup? -Robbers
It’s the SEC and this will be a grown man’s game. That means it all starts up front. Dominate the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and the Gators come out of Death Valley with a win.
Can the Florida defense stop LSU’s offense? -Gatordon
The Gators’ defense looks like they can stop anybody’s offense. Yeah, I’m looking at you Baylor and Oregon.
How big is Kelvin Taylor?
What is the larger concern, Florida being able to get pressure or the safeties getting beat deep?
Like Gatorkarl said, I think those kind of go hand in hand. If Mettenberger gets a clean pocket and time to throw he has the ability to pick defenses apart. However, I would be more concerned with Florida’s safeties getting beat than I would be about Florida getting pressure.
I think UF wins if they somehow score 26 or more, do you agree? -Gator_nica
Florida has held 12-straight SEC opponents to less than 20-points so I think that’s a pretty safe bet.
How do the coaches feel about the play of the offensive line? Is there anything that can be done to make it better? -Kennystyle
The offensive line is playing much better than they have the past two seasons, but that’s not saying much. In my opinion Tyler Moore has really struggled at right tackle. He looked out of place on the outside and we’ve seen that this season. Max Garcia has been the best and most consistent player on the line. Kyle Koehne’s played a lot of positions but he’s been unimpressive. Ian Silberman has struggled when he’s been in and Trenton Brown struggled with what little playing time he’s had at right tackle.
Injuries have slowed the progress of the line. The offensive line really needs to be able to build chemistry and trust each other on the field. You can’t do that with your starting right tackle out for the season and your starting right guard missing more than a month. However, Halapio has been back for a couple games and the line had their best performance against Arkansas. Maybe the line will finally start building that chemistry together with five current starters and we’ll see improvement each week.