Andreu’s Analysis: A positive start for Franks

Quarterback Feleipe Franks answers questions from the media during the University of Florida's Football media day in the Touchdown Terrace on August 2, 2018. [Lauren Bacho/Gainesville Sun]

Being around Feleipe Franks for about 15 minutes earlier this week, one could sense his confidence and how much he’s looking forward to showing Florida fans what he — and the offense — is capable of doing in Dan Mullen’s offense.

He says he has nothing to prove. But if he does go out and play lights out he will be on his way to silencing his critics, and there are many of them. I have a feeling Franks will shine in the opener. He’s been getting coached up by Mullen and quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson and he’s in an offense that is far less complicated than the one he never seemed to get a handle on last season. He’ll know where to go with the football, and he’ll do it quickly in what will be an up-tempo attack. And he will have some success running the football.

Looking back on last season, Franks never really had a chance. His line couldn’t protect him, he was without his two best playmakers (Jordan Scarlett and Antonio Callaway) and Jim McElwain’s offense was simply too complex for a young, inexperienced QB to grasp.

I predict we’ll see a much different Franks on Saturday night in The Swamp. His line is better and he’s now surrounded by a bunch of playmakers at wide receiver, running back and tight end. He has lots of options, and much easier reads to make to get the ball to the skilled players.

I think we’re going to see a confident, poised quarterback who knows how to manage the offense, sustain drives and take care of the football — all the things he struggled with a year ago.

So, my first prediction of the season: Feleipe Franks is going to shine.

And here’s my second: Florida 45, Charleston Southern 10.



      • RS at minimum we’ll be more fit which should mean faster and stronger. IF execution of assignments has improved we are going to be a lot better. The return of Scarlett plus the new RB’s and WR’s and TE’s with a play calling staff that know what it takes to get things done should take some pressure off the OL and the QB. If our D can make a statement and shut them out it will be a great beginning to the season.

        • This OL showed glimpses of what they’re capable of, especially in the 4th quarter 2 years ago against LSU when Scarlett ran it down their throats. I really do believe their issues were a result of the horrible S&C program and them just not being strong enough to win many battles. I’m pretty sure they won’t be getting manhandled this season.

          • I might as well keep the indentation going to the right. Robbie, great story and if what you say plays out it’s going to be a humdinger. And I like your final score a lot better than Pat’s too!

  1. Wishing Franks all the best this season! I sense better results for the young man this year.

    On another note, just heard that Hockman will be transferring from FSU. He’s a former UGA commit with a strong arm and solid work ethic…might be worth a look for Mullen.

    • If we had the QB from UCF we would probably go all the way. I just hope that Franks is in a better place to QB this team. We are a QB away from being a very good team. Our defense will be awesome, but they can’t but on the field for the majority of the snaps. Our offense needs to use a little clock with sustained drives and score more than FG’s. If this happens, I imagine we all will quit doubting Franks. I am praying to the College football Gods daily…LOL. GO GATORS!!!

  2. Thanks for this article. I needed to read this. I hope he kicks ass Saturday. I know JM’s offense was complex , but boy it sure looked predictable on the field when you sat there and watched the games.But like you said, we had some missing pieces last year that had a big effect on things. The good news from that is we discovered Davis and Lemons. I can’t wait to see the team play tomorrow night. Go Gators!

    • I think Franks will do good but I’m worried that it’s more opponent than Franks. I’m hoping and wishing and praying he works out the kinks in this game and then lays the wood on Kentucky. I think that will be a better sign of improvement.

  3. I’m rooting for franks and thinking he will do well, but this game is all downside, no upside, in terms of a player demonstrating that he can perform at a high level. the only way this is a success is if the first team, including qb plays well enough the other guys get to play as well. no stat, no anything else in this game can be looked at as evidence the 10 year trainwreck is finally over.

    • Organization. If the team is doing what it’s supposed to, QB and receivers on same page, penalties (especially procedural) are down, and they pitch a shutout because defensive players are always where that are supposed to be — that kind of stuff will indicate something.

      Oh, and if they don’t have to punt.

    • They should blow them out, but unfortunately Muschamp and Mac had a way of making these teams look like title contenders. We should still get a good idea of his improvement or not if he doesn’t put up better numbers than he did last season. Especially against the likes of UAB when he only had 152 yds and we needed 250+ yds rushing and 5 field goals to make it a respectable win. I mean unless we can dominate simply by running the ball, I’d like to see him throw for at least 250. The most he threw for in a game last season was 212 against Tenn and he needed a 63 yd bomb to get there.

      • I agree completely, Joe. I’d like to see the Gators throw the ball often in this game. They might be able to dominate Charleston Southern by running the ball, but I don’t think they’ll be able to do it against SEC teams. They need to work on the passing offense in a low stress game, so it will be more polished when they need it against stiffer competition.

      • Joe I think a comparison of stats after this game to Franks first couple last year will tell a lot. You are right those games against FCS and group of five where they looked good against us was embarrassing and worrisome. Turned out those games were a sign of the direction we were going. This is a different team in there has been a change in philosophy, S&C, Coaching and a group that know how to coach. I’d look to see them take a shot or two in the air (if this is successful they will stay with it until CS adjusts.) then settle into establish a run game once they have a margin light ’em up with a new and improved passing game. Ultimately there will be a mix of plays and packages that are so predictable a HS team could stay with us. This is going to be the beginning of a great thing.

      • We’ve had good QBs, we just didn’t have the coaches to get the talent out of them. I mean Driskel’s on an NFL roster right now and I just saw an article the other day claiming Jacoby Brissett is one of the best backups in the NFL after starting 15 games for the Colts last season. The owner even said he wouldn’t trade him for a 1st rd pick.

  4. Robbie I sure hope you are right. Regardless of that Franks should take ownership of his failure last season so he can improve and move on. When he says he has nothing to prove that’s just wrong. I believe he was ranked either the worst QB in the SEC or in the bottom 2, that’s unacceptable, own it and correct it but don’t pretend it didn’t happen. Show me.

  5. All 3 qbs should be able to play and look good against Charleston Southern, if given a chance. Apparently they don’t mix it up much on defense. Should make it easier for qbs. Robbie’s prediction should be pretty close.

  6. OK, we are closing in on game time tomorrow, so Coach will be announcing any suspensions for the game. I hope that he has nothing to say!!!!!! That in itself would be a huge improvement to the start of the season vs LY. I think there will be at least some opening day jitters and bumps in the road tomorrow, but I am really looking forward to seeing a stronger, faster, better coached team in the traditional orange and blue. Like that “Old Time Religion” says, I feel a REVIVAL breaking out tomorrow in the Swamp! Go Gators!!!!!!

  7. I have been a GATOR for over 50 years, I’ve seen them at their worst (season tickets 0-10-1) and NEVER saw them lay down like they did last year! McElshame was Foley’s fault, and I have never liked Foley…with that said, WE HAVE the coach, this has talent and I see nothing but good things coming…some teams are going to eat some crow this year! That’s all I’ll say!

  8. I agree with Robbie Andreu – Franks will shine tomorrow night, with a whole bunch of help from his friends (teammates). The key for all of our QBs is not to try and make the impossible play, unless it is the last play of the game and we are losing. MANAGE THE BALL – MAKE SMART, SAFE DECISIONS. I am hoping that the Gators will be up by 3-4 touchdowns by halftime so our other two QBs can get some experience (they will need any experience they can get if Franks gets injured down the road). GO GATORS!!!

  9. I agree with you, Robbie. It’s not unheard of for young, raw quarterbacks to take off their second year, and Franks was in a no-win situation a year ago. Better coaching staff, far better strength and conditioning coach and program, playmakers galore, strong rushing attack and gifted skilled receivers. Add in an improving offensive line and a vastly superior head coach sigh a big offensive vision that’s proven itself… Feleipe can dine brightly!

    Six offensive TDs, one either on defense or by special teams, a field goal and suffocating defense equals a 52-6 Gator win.

  10. I am in NO WAY defending last years “coaches” but just because an offense is complex, doesn’t mean it’s a bad offense. Bad coaches make a complex system bad. Meyer, Mullen and Malzahn all have relatively simple offenses without a whole lot of NFL type verbiage which in the past has been a knock on all three of them. The knock being they aren’t necessarily preparing their QBs for pro systems.

    However, if you have a complex system you MUST be able to adjust to young and inexperienced QBs without diluting the system to a point that it becomes so vanilla that my 20 month old son can predict the play call. That’s one of the many many many things we’ve found out they could not do.

    And that’s the closest I’ll ever come to defending those clowns.

  11. Butter’s offense wasn’t complex, it was simplistic, elementary and predictable and there was no coaching or S&C. Macelwain isn’t smart enough or creative enough to come up with anything complex- please do not give him credit for being “too smart”, that was not the case. He is not only the worst coach in Gator history but probably the worst in the history of college football.

  12. Franks will be as good as the players around him – especially the O line. That said, I am looking for discipline (fewer penalties, no showboating, do your job), physical dominance, and “relentless effort”. All of which will be a welcome change from last season, and a good omen for the games against real competition.

  13. Scott Ingram, I had the very same question–only 45 points? If the Gators can only drop 45, then the offense is not firing on all cylinders! And the only way Charleston Southern scores on this defense is a huge gift by our offense! I predict 69-0!!!