Florida Football: What You Need to Know About Jeff Driskel

Cole Dolan@@ColeDolanCorrespondent IIIJune 13, 2012

Florida Football: What You Need to Know About Jeff Driskel

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    The Florida Gators are facing college football's biggest obstacle: finding a starting quarterback that can consistently lead your team to victory.

    John Brantley had his issues, but he has been the unquestionable starter over the last two years.  Before him, Tebow, and before Tebow, Chris Leak.

    Honestly, it has been almost a decade since the Gators have had to deal with this problem.

    Now with Brantley graduated and no clear favorite in Will Muschamp's fold, it looks like it's going to be a battle of the fittest.

    Front-runners Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel are the two candidates after both seeing playing time last year, but neither has gotten the edge over the other thus far.

    While Brissett has already been broken down, let's break down the other candidate.

Competition Driven

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    Most college football players made a difference on their high school team, that's undeniable.

    But there is a difference between leading a talent-rich school to a state title and bringing a smaller school to new heights.

    That's what sets Jeff Driskel apart from other quarterbacks.

    Driskel played at Hagerty High School, where he produced big numbers and led the school to the most wins during in its history during his senior year.

    It's the competition that drives him, and that's something that has drawn comparisons to Tim Tebow (though we all know there can't be another).

    With the quarterback positional battle raging, Driskel will work until he earns that job.

    That's something you just have to love in a player, especially the one who will be leading the offense.


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    Mobility has been basically obsolete since the departure of Tim Tebow.  In fact, the lack thereof was a major problem for John Brantley and the offense over the last two years.

    Although the spread system has been thrown out, Driskel still brings back that very valuable asset.

    Don't think it works in a pro-style offense?

    Look at Terrelle Pryor's years at Ohio State or even Denard Robinson in the pro/spread hybrid Michigan offense.

    The Gators' offensive line will be improved so scrambling shouldn't be an every-down affair, but it's nice to have the option if the defense is selling out to protect the pass.

    Driskel recorded 1,819 yards with 15 touchdowns through the air and 1,333 rushing yards with 20 touchdowns on the ground during his senior year, proving that he is truly a dual-threat quarterback.

    While we haven't been able to see a fully developed Driskel at Florida yet, this year could be the year that he bursts onto the scene, leading a much improved Gator offense.

Strong but Accurate

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    The term "dual threat" often describes a quarterback with great speed but an average arm.

    That's an insult to Driskel, who is a pocket passer first who simply has the option to escape the pocket if necessary.  While the 2011 season may have fans disagreeing, it was the lack of protection that forced Driskel to make some bad throws.

    It doesn't help that he was thrown to the wolves either, having to step in against Alabama and LSU with Brantley's injury.

    With a much improved offense all around, Driskel should be able to stand tall in the pocket, survey the field and make accurate throws at all ranges.

    Including the deep ball, which is something that Brantley struggled during his time as quarterback.