Scouting Report: Vanderbilt Offense

Looking at Vanderbilt you have a rather ordinary, but balanced offense. They get about 165 on the ground and 161 in the air.

They have scored 30 or more points just three times and only once (Ole Miss) against an SEC team. Vandy can be very careless with the football, committing 16 turnovers in their eight games.

Quarterback --- They could use two quarterbacks Saturday with Mackenzi Adams and Chris Nickson. The two guys are actually quite similar athletes who are better runners than throwers. Adams is a bit more dangerous and has Vandy's longest run of the season (44 yards). He has started the last couple of games and is expected to start this one. They have combined for 411 yards and 2 touchdwowns rushing and 1,251 yards and 10 touchdowns passing with eight interceptions. They key with either of them is to keep them in the pocket and not let them improvise.

Running backs --- Vandy has a good group of ball carriers, led by Cassen Jackson-Garrison (409, 4.0, 5), Jeff Jennings (204, 3.7, 2) and Jared Hawkins (183, 4.0). All three are solid runners, but don't have a lot of big play ability as evidenced by the fact none of them has a run of over 25 yards. They will occasionally make use of their best corner, D.J. Moore (6, 13.0) in the running game. He had a 39-yard gain against Georgia.

Receivers --- At receiver it's all about No. 10 Earl Bennett who has totally dominated the Vandy receiving corps. Bennett one of the best in the SEC, and now has the SEC record with 215 receptions. This year his numbers are typically impressive (54, 11.8, 4). Everyone knows the ball is going to him but he still makes seven catches a game. His next busiest teammate is Sean Walker (15, 13.7, 2) followed by George Smith (14, 15.1, 2). No other Commodores receiver has caught more than five passes.

Offensive line --- This unit is probably the best Vanderbilt has had in the 25 years or so I've been paying attention. They start five seniors and do a pretty good job both of creating running room and protecting their quarterbacks, the strength of the unit is at tackle with two fifth year players in Chris Williams and Brian Stamper who should both get All-SEC consideration.

Overall --- Vanderbilt is a solid, effective offensive football team, but not a particularly explosive one. The biggest concerns are the ability of the QB to make positive plays out of nothing and the line that has the potential to dominate Florida's undermanned defensive front. Florida's rushing defense has been very poor (159.8/game) the last four weeks and has been unable to make key stops to get off the field. Generating some "three-and-out" series is crucial for the Gators in this one.

Questions or comments? Contact FightinGators.com's Larry Vettel


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