The Gold: Weis frustrated with the offense
“The Gold” is a new Gator Country feature highlighting the most relevant and newsworthy tidbits from press conferences and interviews with Florida coaches and players. We’ll get you the latest team news as fast as possible in an easy-to-read format!
The fact that Florida’s offense has struggled throughout the past six games comes as news to no one, and offensive coordinator Charlie Weis said Tuesday evening that he’s as frustrated as anyone.
Weis is disgusted that the Gators have had so many problems punching the ball into the end zone once they get into the red zone.
“I’m frustrated on a number of things,” he said. “It starts off by not scoring enough points. In a game like South Carolina, you get in the red zone three times, you come up with one touchdown. That’s not good enough.”
The offensive coordinator was quick to point out that he’s been frustrated with several things, which he declined to name all at once.
Still, he put most of the emphasis on the fact that in Florida’s three close games, the offense has been unable to score enough points to win in games that the defense gave them a chance.
One area he is particularly unhappy with is the wide receiver position, where Florida hasn’t gotten much production this season.
No wide receiver has caught more passes than Deonte Thompson’s 17, and only Andre Debose has surpassed the 200-yard receiving mark, with 272.
“I’m not happy with the production at a lot of positions, receiver being one of them,” he said. “It’s tough to be happy with the production.”
Weis did say he is happy with the effort from the receivers, particularly as it relates to their blocking. He’d just like to see them contribute more in the passing game.
Effort has been something the offensive coordinator has been thoroughly pleased with to this point in the season, though.
He said there is no outward sign that this Florida team is 5-5. Players still approach practice like they’re an undefeated team, and they work hard in the film room, in team meetings and on the field.
- Weis said he’s been particularly pleased with tight end Jordan Reed’s play over the past month. He said the redshirt sophomore tight end isn’t even close to reaching his ceiling yet. Reed caught a game-high five passes for 62 yards against South Carolina.
- The offensive coordinator used a cane on the sidelines for the first time this season on Saturday. Weis explained that his knees are fine, but he has had immense hip pain. Rather than take medication for the hip pain, Weis elected to use the cane so he could keep his mind sharp. He joked that fans probably thought he was on medication due to the poor play of the offense.
- Florida made some changes on the offensive line last week, most notably moving left guard Dan Wenger to center. Weis said he was comfortable with the move because he knew what Wenger could do from his time coaching him at Notre Dame. He said it helped clean up some of the bad snaps the team had in the previous week.
- The Gators have used the pistol formation extensively the past two weeks. Weis said that could stay in the offense even after John Brantley is fully recovered, but he feels like they can do some things from under center that they can’t do out of the pistol. Essentially, the pistol will stay in as part of the offense, but only as part of it.
- In terms of adapting his scheme to the personnel on the current roster, Weis said he feels he has tried to do that to the best of his ability. The offense has been centered around the speed of Chris Rainey and Jeff Demps, who he feels are two of the best playmakers on the team. He said the offense will have a different look in the spring when they are gone and the Gators have some different personnel in, both at that position and at quarterback.
- In terms of position changes with regard to personnel, Weis said that Trey Burton has been used in a variety of roles. He would like to see him focus on just one role permanently in the offseason, and Weis hinted that could be at tailback with Rainey and Demps graduating.