It seems unfathomable, but it could very easily happen. Losing the Northern Colorado game could turn out to be big. It took away a sure win for the Gators — and an opportunity to restore some confidence coming off the dreadful loss to Michigan.
Speaking of Michigan, the Wolverines showed last week against Cincinnati that they are not necessarily the big, bad, physically dominant team they appeared to be in their 33-17 win in Arlington, Texas, two weeks ago.
So, the Gators head into the third week of the season with zero victories and all kinds of troubling questions.
Is the offensive line that weak?
Is Feleipe Franks the answer at quarterback?
Where are the playmakers on offense?
Will the young secondary hold up and be able to stem big plays in the passing game?
Will the defense continue to struggle against balanced teams like Michigan? And Tennessee?
In the past several years, the defense has managed to keep the Gators in most games. But, based on the performance against Michigan, this does not appear to be a dominant defense. It has some holes (defensive tackle is a big question mark, especially) and it looks like it’s going to give up some big plays in the passing game due to the inexperience in the secondary.
What we do know is Florida’s offense is going to do what it does — mainly make opposing defenses look suffocating. That’s a trait that appears to have carried over. Some of the writers I talked to from Tennessee this week said the Vols’ defense has been awful at times this season, especially against the run in the Georgia Tech game, and is a major concern. They said the UT defense hasn’t played well since the second half of last year’s Florida game. That they looked good in the second half against the Gators is no surprise. That’s this offense’s MO.
Here’s what I see happening Saturday: the offense is going to struggle mightily (like it always does) and there might even be some booing in The Swamp, and a possible quarterback change. The defense will be solid, but not great. The special teams will give the Gators a chance to pull out a win and possibly start turning around the season.
It’s not going to be pretty, but …
Prediction: Florida 21, Tennessee 20