Moody down, but not out


I’ve received numerous e-mails this week from readers wondering about the status of Emmanuel Moody, the Southern Cal transfer who has endured a litany of injuries and setbacks since he’s been here.

The latest setback came Saturday. He lost a fumble on his only carry against Troy and spent the rest of the game on the bench with his head down.

Urban Meyer said Monday that he hasn’t lost confidence in Moody, and the hard-running tailback will still be a factor this season.

Meyer also said Moody had a slight injury he was dealing with Saturday.

“Nothing to keep him out of the game,” Meyer said. “He’s really down. But he’s fine. He came out and practiced (Sunday night). He’s a person that wants to do well. He won the starting job for the Tennessee game last year. He was the starting tailback and then he got hurt. The next two kids (Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey) came in and played well.

“(Moody) is a guy that’s been running hard this year. He showed up at training camp and sprained his ankle and was out two weeks. His whole world is carrying that football and playing at Florida. But injury, fumble, this and this. I certainly haven’t lost confidence in him. He’s going to get it right.”

Moody disappeared Saturday. But it looks like he has a good chance to reappear at some point this season.


  1. I’m glad to hear of your positive sounding update. I’m one (apparently in minority) that believes that Coach Myers (before whom I stand in awe), for some reason unbeknownst to the outsider, has been purposefully keeping Emmanual Moody from really being allowed to show his true potential. I believe that Moody needs one game where he has at least 15-20 carries to prove or discredit himself.
    THEN let’s make the make the charges of Fumbleitis, or Injury Proneness, or (excuse the pun) Moodiness and then they’ll have more credence. But I believe this kid has JUST NOT YET BEEN ALLOWED TO SHOW HIS FULL POTENTIAL! I hope he will be soon!

  2. Obviously he was in the dog house for the fumble and was punished by being held out for the remainder of the game. His fumble was caused by a strip from behind, not from contact in the pile, it happens. A few other players had more careless fumbles during the game and they didn’t get yanked, seems Meyer is a little tougher on Moody? I personally think he is the strongest runner we have but I guess we will never know if Meyer doesn’t throw the guy a bone as he does with others who drop the rock. Can’t figure out how the guy can go from 07 PAC 10 freshman of the year to 3rd or so on the Florida backs depth chart? I just want to see the guy turn it loose. Maybe this Saturday?

  3. If Emmanuel Moody would just hold on to the football he probably would see more carries. Meyer puts ball security at a premium, and rightfully so. If you can’t hold onto the ball in practice or against Troy, how can you be expected to hold onto it against UT, LSU, UGA, or Alabama?

  4. I was dissapointed in what looks like a complete benching during that game when to be consistent Thompson and others have had their errors and been given a chance to redeem. (heck it was a wet field) You want to bench someone bench #36 after the bonehead unsportsmanlike penalty! I wish Coach would have put Moody back in at some point instead of this apparent heavy handed approach.

  5. When the scatbacks are ripping off long runs each game, it’s easy to forget about Moody. And in fairness, I see Rainey runing a lot harder this year. HOWEVER, we are going to need Moody to get through the SEC schedule. We need a strong back for tough yards so we don’t have to resort to trickery. The LBs are keying on Tebow in short yardage, every time. I see great potential in Moody. I hope Urban will let him grow on the field more often than he makes him learn from the bench.

  6. Can’t help but feel sorry for the guy. It seems it’s been difficult getting him on the field. I think he is going to surprise someone if he gets on the field with some extensive playing time. I’m really pulling for the guy. I have no complaints about what coach Meyer is doing, I know he’ll make him better.

  7. I agree. I’m so thrilled to see how much talent we have on both sides of the ball. With regard to the running backs, I look at the tailbacks we tried to get (i.e. Devine, Spiller, McKnight) and I honestly have to wonder, despite their respective achievements, would we really be any better with any or all of those backs in exchange for the backs we have? Not to take anything away from Demps or Rainey, but I saw some [NFL analyst’s?] listing of the top backs in the country, it actually listed Moody and did not list Demps or Rainey. I have total faith in Moody [and Demps and Rainey]. I think each can – and probably will – make great contributions this year. I can’t wait to see what they do this weekend. Make it ugly, gentlemen!!!!

  8. Meyer can say what he wants in the paper, but it is obvious that he has lost confidence in Moody or he would have played more last Saturday and in previous games. Meyer is not revealing all with his comments, I believe.

  9. I say this first – only Coach Meyer can see what the young men display in practice and how they fit each game’s plan. However, from what I have seen in Moody’s sporadic showings, he has not only appears to have generous speed and agility but he also runs with force. Rainey ran with fire and guts last week and undoubtedly deserves more consideration than he ever has but I sure hope to see more of Moody. A scary thought for the opposing defense is to expect Rainey or Demps in the slot with Moody at tailback. I’d feel better seeing the former two develop as receivers in light of depth issues at that position.

  10. Moody WILL be needed this season if we want to reach all of our goals. He is the only experienced big back that we have plus what happens if Demps or Rainey go down?? He needs to step it up this season and be a major contributor or we can forget about any crystal footballs this year. Also, one or two of our younger recievers need to step to the plate as well. So far, Hines looks like the one but where are you Frankie and TJ???

  11. No matter what Urban thinks, people love to see Moody play.Yes, Demps and Rainy are great to watch, but when Moody gets on the field I catch a glimpse of moves thats thrilling to watch.Its diferent from the other guys. Not better, but just as good potentially if he can stay on the field consistenly.Thats why people want to see more of him.

  12. We were wondering what happened to Moody in and why Urban didnt put him back in for more playing time. Yes, he did fumble but so did a lot of guys including Tim, and they all were allowed to keep playing. If Moody isnt injured, then it would seem to help if he could stay in and work out the kinks.Fans see his potential greatness and that hes on the verge of breaking out at any time. Keep your chin up Emmanuel and keep moooving forward!

  13. If Moody was benched the whole game for that fumble I think its extreme punishment considering the wet weather. Didn’t Hines fumble (it was recovered by the Gators) and then catch a TD pass? I don’t get it. Of course if he was injured that’s another story.

  14. From what I saw during the game, Moody was one of three Gators to lose a fumble. Yet he was the only one not to play after the loss of a fumble. I have to agree there is more to the issue than coach is saying. If not, I don’t feel Moody is not being given a fair shot. I can see why he is down if he is working hard as the coach says and doesn’t get to play. I hope he sticks with it for all of us Gator fans sake.

  15. Personally I don’t think it was wise or fair for Coach Meyer to bench E. Moody for the balance of the game last Saturday. It seems to me that the coach does not like Moody. I saw fumbles by Tebow (and Cooper and Demps also, however, they went out of bounds) and they were not benched. We do need a tough running back like Moody, hopefully the coaches will give him another chance just as they did with Thompson.

  16. For the most part, the points about Moody being a back that will get us through the SEC are true. Rainey and Demps are great at getting those flashy yards, but a bruiser like Moody is REQUIRED to get through that tough SEC schedule. It would be great to have a power back like Moody to compliment the power running that Tebow supplies. There’s a reason why the term “Thunder & Lightning” applies when describing the running game…

  17. When moody fumbled that ball he looked like a kid who just let his dad down. He didnt even want to go to the sideline. I think Urban needs to back off him a bit and let him get some reps with the ones its hard for a guy to get comfortable when he is more worried about messing up. Some guys just need more praise than others and wiht moody coming from USC with so much expected. I speak for myself when i say coming into this year i expected him to get 10-12 touches a game and be an 800 yard back.

  18. Give the man a break. It was wet, and looking at the play, a good punch out by the tackler. And — I counted at least 5 fumbles and loose balls by Gator running backs, receivers and yes, even our quarterback — some were lost, and some were recovered

    Moody has talent and is really the only back we have that has the size and speed to get the tough 1 or 2 yards.

    We will need him. He deserves to play

  19. Meyer does not like guys that put the ball on the ground. Moody will get another chance, but he better not fumble or he will be watching every game from the sidelinss. I agree we need him, but not if he is going to put the ball on the ground.

  20. Demps and Rainey can’t take the beating Moody can. I’m not saying they’re not tough enough, but their size requires them to hit the line much harder than Moody. This will take a toll, especially as the season wears on. We need Moody to pound the defense and tire them out so the other two can zip through them more easily. Coach Meyer should have given him another chance Saturday.

  21. Moody has never really been given a fair chance at UF. He will come in and look great for a few plays, and then disappear to the bench for the rest of the game. The coached don’t “give up” on Deonte Thompson when he drops 2 easy catches to start the year, but they give up on Moody for fumbling a wet ball (1 of 6 in the game). I don’t understand the coaches’ attitude towards Moody.

  22. RLG’s comment set me off. We get upset by an opposing coach calling our head coach a cheater but then it’s alright if we call him a liar. Sounds a little hypocritical to me. Accept what the man says at face value. What we think about Moody’s status is totally irrelevant anyway.

  23. I hope that Moody will be given more opportunties to prove himself this year as it was obivious that he was upset in the Troy game. Tebow was talking with him as well from the sidelines. I felt for the guy as I wish him well.

    We need you Emmanuel.

    Keep your head up and stay positive.

  24. It certainly feels like Moody was written off after his first fumble in an Orange and Blue game. He runs hard, and seems like a good kid. Perhaps Meyer is mesmerized by the big play potential of his speed backs, and that is understandable, but in a long season a big back like Moody would seem to be a good weapon to have as well. I hope he gets a chance.

  25. Moody committed a mortal sin Saturday…he fumbled after a good run. On his first carry, no less. Meyer has shown us before that this will put your butt on the boards for this worst of all sins, in his eyes. Receivers can drop passes in the end zone, and go right back in for another shot. Running backs? Different story. We DO need Moody to have an effective running attack when we meet the big boys. The fans love Moody, and he has earned his shot at substantial playing time. Put him back in, Coach!

  26. There were 6 fumbles Saturday. Only 1 by Moody. Tebow fumbled, Demps fumbled, James fumbled, but none of them sat out more than a play or 2 afterward. You’ve got to wonder about Meyer’s comments on confidence in Moody. Injuries aside, he has never appeared highly confident in Moody, even from the first year when he questioned Moody’s value right to Moody’s face.

  27. Moody may weigh more than Demps and Rainey, but he doesn’t run like a power back. Only Tebow runs that way. I don’t know about Meyer, but I’ve lost confidence in Moody. I feel much better when Demps or Rainey line up beside Tebow. From what I’ve seen in games (granted I don’t see practice) I’d limit Moody’s play to garbage time. We don’t need a third RB who is slower than the top 2 and no harder to tackle.

  28. I realize that Moody fumbled Saturday, but if memory serves me right so did Teboe, Demps, Rainey Gilespie and maybe someone else. It was raining. It seems to me it would have done alot to restore his confidence if they would have civen him another chance.

  29. I like the idea that Moody is the big back, the power back in our line-up BUT he is not reliable. Maybe we are seeing the essence of why he was allowed to leave USC without them begging him to stay. While at UF he has never stepped up in a showcase game and anytime he does play he fumbles. I feel we should let him go quietly w/o any further expectations. Giving him the ball is too risky.

  30. Moody is a STUD. Sorry 1974gator but you’re off your rocker dude. Did you see all the fumbles Saturday including Tebow? And we’re singling out Moody? That’s not right man. Why do all the other backs (including Harvin last year – see Ole Miss loss) get mulligans but this kid can’t catch a break? It’s a shame because he seems like such a hard worker and keeps out of trouble. And he’s a stud with the ball in his hands. He reminds me of Fred Taylor in terms of size, speed and running style. Moody deserves a break. The fumble was a fluke hit from behind where the helmet punched the ball out. He was carrying it correctly. I don’t want to second guess Urban because I love him as a coach, but you almost wonder if it’s the fact that he didn’t recruit Moody and he’s going to showcase his own recruits more. Maybe that’s stupidity, but I can’t find another logical explanation for this whole enigma who would start at 99% of the schools in the country. Emmanuel – PLEASE KEEP YOUR HEAD UP. WE NEED YOU!!

  31. As a competitor, I think it’s important to be given opportunity to make up for your mistakes…I have no doubt in Moody’s ability, I just hope he is allowed to get more into the groove…1 carry & mistake and being pulled can do something to your confindence…and with what we set out to accomplish each year along with what we have accomplished, the bullseye is so large on us, we are definitely going to need a big back that can carry the mail when needed…..I think it would be a good idea to mix him in more…

  32. I agree that E. Moody is a great running back and if given 1/3 of chance to run the ball, he will produce big gains for coach Meyer! Heck, it was raining when he fumbled and even T. Tebow fumbled during that rain! Urban you can’t treat one player one way and another player another way!

  33. I think that Moody can be one of the best all-around running backs in the Country. I think you are going to see him pound it on Saturday against UT. It’s time for the big time players to play big time football……Emmanuel is a big time player and a great guy. His time is now! Go Gators!

  34. Meyer wonders why none of the highly ranked running backs, (i.e. Trent Richardson, class of 2008, and Alabama signee) never sign a letter of intent to play at Florida. The answer to that question stares him in the face every morning when he’s shaving. Urban Meyer has mistreated “damn good” running backs ever since he came to Florida. It’s is a mystery to me what he is looking for in a running back. I KNOW that we are going to need an Emmanuel Moody if we’re to get to a championship game this year. Moody should be the “every down” back, that means 12-15 carries a game. Rainey and Demps should spell Moody and bring in the change of pace. Against SEC caliber defenses, we are going to need a back that can pick up 3 yards on first and second down, instead of losing a yard or no gain. I think Rainey and Demps are great, and are a needed change of pace for the offense, but no way they should be the primary “go to” backs over Moody. I say Meyer should look a litte closer in the mirror in the mornings and try to figure out what his issue is with the talented, bigger type running backs. It is clear to me that he is the problem, and not the myriad of running backs that he has discardes since he has been at Florida.

  35. Give Moody a chance to play against TN. or bench the rest of the players who lost the ball against Troy including Tebow. Benching a guy the whole game for a fumble in the rain when at least 4 other players fumbled and continued to play is NOT FAIR. What have you got against Moody coach?

  36. We don’t know why Moody didn’t get in the game more, and it’s easy to second-guess Meyer. All I’m sayin’ is that I see something special in this guy. When I watch him rip off a 10-15 yard run, I am reminded of Taylor, or even Neal Anderson. It’s not fair to compare Moody to those guys– or even to the success of Demps and Rainey. But I ask you, when was the last time we had a successful big back? I think the spread can be physical, but when you get into a smashmouth game (like ‘Bama?) you need to be able to grind it out sometimes. I think Moody can be that guy, and I think UF needs that tool in our toolbox. KEEP YOUR HEAD UP, EMMANUEL. Go Gators.

  37. I dont know what it is, and I dont belierve that the fumble was enough to bench him, but at lunch talking GATOR ball with my good friend Gunby, it was suggested that he could look good in Pallidan threads next year , his last, if he dosent get to play more. I do like him and I wish that the coach would feature him more. Can he catch a pass? GAP

  38. For those of you that are writing off E Moody, STOP! I was @ the Troy game & saw EM fumble the ball, In the Rain, as did Tebow, but you have to undersatnd that Coach looks @ each position differently. He has 1 QB, possibly the best in the country again this year, that needs the reps & time, where he has 3-4 talented RB’s that all want & need time to round out the offense & allow the coaches the opportunity to learn what works & doesn’t work well in specific game situations. EM is a great RB & to think that USC just let him go is nuts, their situation was that they had/have a stable of RB’s that they can turn to @ anytime, given the down & distance scenario, to get the first/TD. EM was inteligent enough to know that he was going to get limited play time & wants to be on the field PLAYING. That’s why he sat on the sidelines dissapointed in the drop, he knows that Meyer won’t tollerate it from any of his backs. This same scene played out last year, if a RB dropped the ball you didn’t see much of him play after that. The only way Tebow gets pulled is if he’s hurt, get thrown out or tosses 5-6 Int’s & fumbles 3-4 times all in 1-2 qtrs. EM will be back & he will be that pounding runner we need, like Coffee was for Bama last year. Demps & Rainey are the scat backs & EM is the versatile back that we’ll need to finish a successful, Hopefully Undefeated season finally. Keep an eye out for him, you will probably see him put up some good carries tomorrow in the Swamp, he’s the kind of guy that will rise to the occassion. Also if your thinking this is going to be a Blowout, hang on! UT & the Mississippi teams always given us a hard time. I’d love a Blowout, don’t get me wrong, but UT really has nothing to loose in this 1 & could come out loose & more prepared that you’d expect. As a Bucs fan since ’76 I haven’t seen a better D coach than Monte before, get ready Gators it’s gonna get ugly either way!! Goooooo Gators!

  39. I have known this young man since he was in middle school and he is like a son to me. He is indeed a fantastic athlete with a heart for God and football. It hurts us back home to see him struggle emotionally when we KNOW he is not given a fair shake with Meyers. We also see that he is certainly not the only player out there making mistakes and fumbling the ball…but for some very strange reason he pays the most! If he sits there with his head down after being yanked…I know he is only beating himself up because he knows what little playing time he will get in the next game. I know him and I know what he is made of and I am here to tell you if given the chance…he could make it happen. We love you Eman…

    Mom of the Heart