Florida starting quarterback John Brantley has waited patiently for years behind superstar quarterback Tim Tebow and doesn’t want out of the starting lineup.
After losing to Alabama and LSU, Florida can still have an impact in the SEC. However, it will be interesting to see how the quarterback situation is evaluated in the next two or three weeks.
Florida can’t afford any more losses. The junior quarterback had an efficient 16 for 24 performance for 154 yards against LSU. However, upcoming games against Dan Mullen’s Mississippi State’s squad and Mark Richt’s desperate Georgia Bulldog team will determine what kind of season the Gators will have.
Brantley has endured endless questions about his injury status, but still insists he is capable of playing.
The resilient junior quarterback took questions from the local press and sounded positive and confident moving forward toward a big home game versus Mississippi State. (Florida Gators video)
“There was never any doubt that I was going to play,” Brantley told reporters after the LSU-Florida game. “I knew since Monday or Sunday I was. They’re [ribs] just a little banged up. Nothing too serious. Nothing you can’t play through.”
According to ESPN’S John Schad, Brantley has hairline fractures in four ribs and endured significant “damage” to his ribs.
Brantley and Meyer described a thumb injury as a “sprain” but the source said there is also a small fracture in the thumb.
Injuries are a part of the game, but if Brantley has multiple serious injuries, could keeping him out there affect his long-term health?
Can Trey Burton thrive in a larger role and fill-in as the starter this early in his career?
It was a little curious to see freshman Jordan Reed, who slated to be a tight end in the spring (You Tube video), put in to a situation as the new ‘wild gator’ threat and even though Burton did receive some playing time (9 carries for 35 yards vs. LSU), one has to wonder if the next step is Burton as the starter and Reed receiving even more playing time.
The 6’3, 240 pound Reed did convert on a third-and-goal at the LSU 1 and scored Florida’s first touchdown in the Gators’ close loss against the Tigers.
Only time will tell if Florida will expand Trey Burton’s role. Is Burton the next Denard Robinson and poised to have a similar impact?
Coach Meyer had recently talked about the recruitment of Robinson.
“I thought he was fantastic,” Meyer said, according to ESPN.com. “He’s a good young man. We wanted him that badly, because we thought he could be our curve ball. I thought he could be a quarterback because he has a nice throwing motion, and he’s a ridiculous athlete.”
For now, John Brantley is the man. However, the outcomes of the Mississippi State and Georgia games may force Meyer to throw a “curve ball” in regard to the quarterback situation at Florida.