Behind the Numbers: Offense End of Year Review

What a whirlwind of a season for the Florida Gators, eh!?

From the unknown to start the season, to an early season loss to Kentucky, to a few gritty top-15 wins against Mississippi State and LSU, to a letdown against Georgia and Missouri, to a huge come from behind win against South Carolina, and then blowing the doors off Idaho, Florida State, and Michigan.

All the while, Florida has a recruiting class that will likely rank number one in the state of Florida, will likely keep their staff completely intact, and have developed a bevy of talent to carry into 2019.

If you followed along to these articles all 13 times this season, you saw the highs and the lows of the Gators on offense and defense; including areas where they improved, areas they struggled, and frankly, a blank canvas that was painted throughout the season that sometimes looked unattractive or confusing, but ended in a beautiful work of art, including ending the last 199:41 minutes of the season on a 166-39 blowout.

How did the Gators fare on offense this year? Where were the biggest improvements? How did Dan Mullen and Co. rejuvenate an offense on life support for the last eight years?

Let’s explore.

  • Florida will finish the season with the 22nd ranked scoring offense in 2018. It had not finished higher than 43rd in the last 8 years – with the average over those 8 years ranking 79th in the FBS.
  • Feleipe Franks 2,457 yards passing are the most by a Gators quarterback since Tim Tebow in 2009. Same with touchdowns (24), QB rating (143.34), interception rate on attempted passes (.018%), and yards per game. He was also the first quarterback to play in every game in a season since 2010 (John Brantley)
  • The Gators had six receivers with more than 200 yards receiving on the season for the first time since 2010 and had nine receivers (with at least 9+ catches on the season) average more than 10+ yards per reception for the first time since 2001.
  • The 23 rushing touchdowns were the most by the Gators since 2010. Their 2,771 yards rushing and their 5.27 yards per carry were their most since 2009. And for the first time since 2009, the Gators top-3 running backs averaged more than 5.9 yards per carry. The Gators ranked 27th in the country in rushing yards per game, after finishing 75th last season.
  • The Gators six interceptions are the lowest in a season since 2012.
  • Feleipe Franks streak of five straight games without an interception is the first time the Gators have accomplished that feat since 2009.
  • The Gators scored 40+ points in six games this year for the first time since 2009.
  • This year, the Gators only allowed 18 sacks (1.39 per game) ranking 21st in the country, which is a 103-spot improvement over their 124th ranking last season (3.69). Last season the Gators were sacked 9.8% of the time on passing downs (98th in the country), this year it was 0.9% of the time (1st in the country).
  • The Gators ranked 16th in the country in fewest turnovers lost (14).
  • The Gators improved +74 spots nationally in yards per play over last season, which is the largest improvement in the FBS.
  • Florida had 84 rushes go 10+ yards. Last season, they had 58 and the season before they had just 45.
Daniel Thompson
Dan Thompson is a 2010 graduate of the University Florida, graduating with a degree in Economics and a degree in Political Science. During this time at UF, Dan worked three years for the Florida Gator Football team as a recruiting ambassador. Dan dealt daily with prospects, NCAA guidelines, and coaching staff. Dan was also involved in Florida Blue Key, Student Government and Greek Life. Currently, Dan oversees the IT consulting practice of a Tampa-based company. Dan enjoys golfing, country music, bourbon, travel, oysters, and a medium-rare steak. Dan can be found on Twitter at @DK_Thompson.