G-Gun vs. Gators

Everyone with an active brain cell knows that Florida will crowd the line of scrimmage to stop the run in today's 3:30 kickoff against Tennessee.

"Most definitely," Tennessee receiver Gerald Jones concedes. "I don't think anyone believes our receivers can beat anybody downfield or get off press coverage. That's been the talk for the two years I've been here."

A receiver corps that is suspect against press coverage is only one phase of a three-part equation, though.

Part 2 is the fact the Vols have an inexperienced quarterback, Jonathan Crompton, who is completing just 52.8 percent of his passes with more interceptions (3) than touchdown passes (2).

Part 3 is the fact Tennessee has a productive tailback, Arian Foster, who ran for 1,193 yards last season and is closing in on becoming UT's all-time rushing leader.

Given that Crompton's ability to handle pressure and the wideouts' ability to handle press coverage are both suspect, the Gators realize that UT offensive coordinator Dave Clawson would love to take the football – and the game itself – out of Crompton's hands and put it in Foster's hands.

As Jones notes: "They're probably coming into the game thinking, 'Stop Arian Foster. Stop Arian Foster.'

"If we (receivers) can make plays and beat press coverage one on one, that will open it up for him."

But what if Vol wideouts can't make enough plays to force the Gators to loosen up their defense a bit. What is Plan B?

Probably the G-Gun. Jones, a shotgun quarterback in high school, averaged 7.2 yards per carry in limited action as a direct-snap tailback last season. If Foster can't find running room and Crompton can't find open receivers, the G-Gun may be the Vols' best alternative. Heck, it may be the Vols' ONLY alternative.

So, does Jones expect to play an extended role in the G-Gun vs. Florida?

"Probably not an extended role," he says, "but I'll probably be back there a couple of times, depending on what Coach Clawson feels."

Opponents had greater success stopping the G-Gun as the 2007 season wore on, mostly because every play essentially consisted of Jones taking the direct snap and heading toward right tackle. For the package to work against Florida, it must be a bit more imaginative than that.

"I think I would have to used in a dual way, as far as using my arm and my legs," Jones says. "I believe once I get back at quarterback, they're going to automatically think run. We can shake 'em up a little bit by letting me use my arm."

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