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Dooley Grades the Gators: Special night

Pat Dooley
Gator Sports

OFFENSE A-

First half: What can you say about an offense that puts up 411 yards in the first half against a defense considered to be one of the best in the country? Certainly, the Bulldogs were missing some players — most notably safety Richard LeCounte — but the numbers for Kyle Trask were ridiculous.

Second half: It's not like the offense went conservative in the second half, but they certainly were not as efficient. The drive to start the second half netted a field goal and there were some shaky Trask throws late in the game, but the offense did what it needed to do.

For the game: Florida ended up with 571 yards and 29 first downs. Those are Alabama numbers. Most importantly, the offense scored 44 points, which any Gator fan would have taken going into the game. That second quarter was something to behold.

5 takeaways:Kyle Trask's arm carries Gators offense

Big hit:Kyle Pitts shaken up in violent targeting hit by Georgia's Lewis Cine

DEFENSE B-

Florida defensive back Brad Stewart Jr. (2) breaks up a pass intended for Georgia running back Kendall Milton during the first half Saturday in Jacksonville.

First half: Obviously, you never want to start a game giving up a 75-yard touchdown to a tailback not known for breaking off big plays. And then another easy Georgia touchdown drive. But after that, Florida's defense allowed 30 yards the rest of the half. Dropped passes didn't hurt.

Second half: The drive that kind of got Georgia back in the game was not good and Florida was fortunate that Georgia didn't have a quarterback who could hit deep passes. Still, the Gators shut down the run and made the stops when they had to have them.

For the game: Give the defense credit for getting the job done. There were moments when it struggled and certainly that start was deflating. But the Gators only allowed one offensive touchdown the rest of the game, keeping the opponent out of the end zone is what it's all about.

SPECIAL TEAMS B

First half: Evan McPherson came in after missing last week and nailed a 50-yard field goal. The bad news — Florida allowed a 50-yard kickoff return that almost went the distance and Kadarius Toney made what could have been a big mistake fielding a punt at his own 5-yard line.

Second half: McPherson hit a 51-yarder to start the half and made another to wrap up the scoring, but obviously the miss made you a little nervous. He also had a kickoff out of bounds, but Florida definitely had the better punter.

For the game: There were some mistakes on special teams, but they weren't costly. It was good to see McPherson come back and launch the two kicks of 50 yards.

OVERALL A-

It wasn't perfect and that start probably freaked out a lot of Gator fans. But Florida ended the three-game Georgia win streak and here's a stat that should impress — the Gators had only three penalties for 15 yards. And Florida won this game without Kyle Pitts in the second half. And we could keep going. It was a special night.