Gators Gameday: Three big questions heading into Florida's game vs Eastern Washington

Kevin Brockway
Gator Sports

Three questions for the Florida Gators heading into their matchup at The Swamp on Sunday against the Eastern Washington Eagles (noon, SEC Network Plus).

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Can quarterback Anthony Richardson build on his career passing performance? 

Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson (15) during the first quarter against Tennessee on Sept. 24 at Neyland Stadium.

Richardson completed eight passes of 20 yards or more against Tennessee and threw for 453 yards, proving he could throw the ball downfield with accuracy and timing. This could be another game where Richardson gains confidence connecting with receivers downfield, especially if EWU's defense creeps up to stop the run. 

Can Florida's new-look secondary defend the pass better?

New starters Jaydon Hill (cornerback) and Kamari Wilson (safety) will look to help improve a pass defense that ranks 10th in the SEC, giving up 220.8 passing yards per game. Coverage busts have occurred on and off throughout the season so it will be important for the new faces in the secondary to establish chemistry and maintain consistency throughout all four quarters.

Can the Gators execute better in the red zone?

UF has often cashed in on red-zone scoring chances throughout the season, but took a step back last Saturday, going 4 for 6, which included a turnover on downs and fumble by Richardson. The EWU game will present an opportunity to fix those issues in a game setting.

Key matchup: CB Jason Marshall vs. WR Efton Chism III

Chism (15 catches. 125 yards, three TDs) is looking to follow in the footsteps of Cooper Kupp and Kendrick Bourne, two other former EWU receivers who made it to the NFL. It will be up to Marshall and the rest of Florida's secondary to keep Chism in check.