One Series Sums Up Florida's Offense, Season

We've tried all season to do our best to explain the problems of this Gator football team, particularly the offense which has regressed in each of the last two seasons. But try as we might we never quite got it right. When we thought there were positive signs a disastrous performance would follow.

But Saturday in Tallahassee the Gators spelled it out for you perfectly. Now we can all understand the dysfunctional mess that is the Gator offense for 2010 and all it takes is seven plays.

It was late in the second quarter when the Gators, down 24-7, got the ball on the 20-yard line. With 80 yards to go and 2:47 on the clock, Florida appeared likely to run out the clock and try to regroup at halftime.

But Jordan Reed picked up 11 yards and Chris Rainey added 13 more and Florida was at the 44. After an incomplete pass Reed ran for 16 and Rainey added 18 more, and Florida was at the FSU 22 with plenty of time to finish the drive and close the gap. Reed gained two more yards and Florida sent John Brantley into the game.

Florida's momentum died with that personnel, change and the drive ended one play later when Brantley was intercepted. That play ended any realistic chance the Gators had of making a game of it in the second half, and the decision to pull the QB who had led the team 60 yards in just six plays perfectly reflected the schizophrenic nature of the Florida offense.

There's an old saying in football that if you have two quarterbacks you really don't have any. We're still working on a phrase for the three-headed quarterback situation the Gators are trying to make work. Florida ran for 212 yards against the Seminoles, but passed for just 64. It's hard to play catch up if you can't complete a pass, and Florida completed just eight on the day. The longest pass play of the game was the first completion to Robert Clark for a 20-yard touchdown. The Gators averaged less than one passing yard per minute the rest of the game.

Florida still has a bowl game to play, but it's hard to imagine anyone on this team being all that excited about it. After all, this team showed little emotion or passion when playing South Carolina for the SEC East title and even less when facing their biggest rival on Saturday afternoon. It will be tough to get this team ready to perform at a high level whether they are playing Penn State in the Gator Bowl or anyone else anywhere else.

And it really doesn't matter. Preparation for the 2011 season begins now, and if you think Gator Nation is cranky now, try going into next season with minimal or no staff changes and a three quarterback rotation.

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