The coaches are hoping that one quarterback takes the job and runs with it. That has been what they’ve been waiting for since the start of the season, but against New Mexico State and East Carolina, there were set times for Will Grier and Treon Harris to be in the game.
If one of the quarterbacks gets hot on Saturday, McElwain said they’d be more inclined to let him run with the offense.
“That’s what we’d like to get to,” McElwain said. “If a guy’s hitting threes, (he’ll stay in). At the same time, it’s not going to be one of those deals where a guy makes a bad throw and then you’re (out). I don’t believe in that either. If a guy’s hitting it and distributing it and has a good stroke, then we’ll go with it.”
The plan is to review practice film late Wednesday night and meet on Thursday before practice to talk about which quarterback will open the game. McElwain downplayed any benefit Harris has since he started games at Vanderbilt and Florida State last season.
Both quarterbacks have starting experience. Harris started the opener against New Mexico State and Grier started against East Carolina. However, as McElwain was quick to point out, both of the opening drives ended with a punt. They’ll review the practice field and make a decision after Harris worked with the first-team offense on Tuesday and Grier led the first-team offense on Wednesday.
McElwain did say there’s no timeline on when the quarterback competition would end. They’d like one of the two to take the job and run with it, but if neither Grier or Harris emerge, they’ll stick with the two-quarterback system as long as they need.
“Don’t have a timeline on it,” McElwain said. “I think the team has settled into it. Here’s the good thing -- both guys are really studying the game plan. I think that’s a really good thing. You don’t have a starter doing all the work and the other guy coming and get half of it and all of a sudden it’s my turn. You’ve got to prepare yourself like the starter.”
Florida cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III (leg) is probable after practicing Tuesday and Wednesday. Tackle Martez Ivey (knee) practiced this week and is cleared for Saturday.
A new injury popped up this week in practice when tight end C’yontai Lewis hurt his hand on Tuesday. He practiced with a club protecting it on Wednesday, but his status for Saturday is in doubt.
“If he can’t go, then Camrin Knight is ready to go and Moral Stephens has been doing a good job as well,” McElwain said. “That’ll still be able to keep us in our three and four tight end stuff.”
Receiver Josh Grady suffered a leg injury this week and is doubtful for Saturday. Running back Case Harrison (hand) is out for “a couple weeks.”