8/12: Brantley, Hammond, Dunbar talk offense

By Adam Silverstein
August 12, 2011

With the Florida Gators having completed their first two-a-day practice of the 2011 season, a number of prominent players from the offensive side of the ball met with the media on Friday to discuss how the team is progressing early on in camp.

OFFENSE COMING TOGETHER

The overriding sense on Friday is that Florida’s offense is a lot more fluid than it was at this time one year ago. Not only is redshirt senior quarterback John Brantley more confident in his abilities, his pass catchers are, too. And it doesn’t hurt that they are stepping up as well. “Coach [Aubrey] Hill has done a great job with them so far this camp,” Brantley said. “We’re seeing improvement every single day with route running. As long as they keep getting better everyday, we’ll be happy.”

Stepping out from among the pack is redshirt junior wide receiver Frankie Hammond, Jr., who head coach Will Muschamp and some of his teammates agree is the most consistent of the bunch. “[He’s] making plays, making the touch catches and making the easy catches that he’s supposed to make. And making people miss after those catches,” Brantley added. “You can tell that he’s been studying his playbook, and it’s been showing on the field.”

Hammond himself agrees with Brantley’s assessment. “[I’m] just getting down the plays,” he said. “It’s a new offense, so the biggest change is putting in the new offense and everybody getting up to speed and learning the new plays.”

DUNBAR STANDING OUT

Just like he did in spring ball, redshirt freshman WR Quinton Dunbar is coming on strong in the fall, proving he can be an electric and dependable target. “[He’s] just making plays when plays need to be made,” Brantley explained. “Anyone can catch the ball when no one’s around, but it’s what you do in traffic and on the go routes – if you can go up there over the cornerback. He’s just making plays.”

Dunbar himself said his connection with Brantley is strong and, while he is getting some praise, he appreciates being an under-the-radar player. “It means a lot to me because I’m just trying to help the team in any way,” he said. “So I go out there and work hard every day to get better.”

NOTES AND QUOTES

[EXPAND Click to expand and read the remainder of this post.]» Brantley said there is a pretty even distribution of practice snaps behind him for all three reserve quarterbacks. “They’re doing real good. Jacoby [Brissett]’s picked up on it real quick because he’s been here the shortest amount of time. Just like the receivers and just like everyone else, they’re getting better reach day.”

» Brantley also said that having some veterans on the offensive line is giving him some confidence and he is impressed in their production as well as that of senior running back Jeff Demps after running track this summer.

» Brantley on if the offense is game-ready: “We’re really close. These past three days have been really good for our offense. As long as we keep going, in this next week we’re going to be very game-ready.”

» Dunbar said he prefers the go routes and comebacks but says overall the wide receivers are running a wider variety of routes this year. “Vertical is a big part of this offense,” he said. “[Running] to set up the pass is a big emphasis.”

» Redshirt senior cornerback Moses Jenkins on what he’s up to: “I’m just trying to grind. I’m just going hard, studying my playbook, asking coaches more questions [about] film.”

» Jenkins on coming back from injury: “People don’t understand that when we’re out there playing, we don’t think about injuries. But when you get injured and you’re not playing, not playing hurts more. You’re watching your team win games and have fun and all of that.”

» Jenkins on the defense as a whole: “We’re going to be a lot tougher, a lot faster, a lot more physical. I can’t wait to get started.”[/EXPAND]

4 Comments

  1. Daniel M. says:

    Finally! The OGGOA Store has arrived. I’ve been getting pretty steamed at my inability to locate a Gator Snuggie or even a Gator toaster. No longer…..Thank you Only Gators Get Out Alive!

    But seriously, awesome Adam. The site grows yet again. I’m sure you’re pulling down at least 40% of all sales. HA!

    • a) I’ve had the OGGOA Store for at least 18 months if not longer. Tons of people have bought stuff in it so far. Just got a new graphic for it.
      b) I WISH I was getting a 40% cut. LOL

  2. OBgator says:

    I just hope we are flexible enough to recognize that sometimes the pass has to set up the run. You can’t always hope to run to set up the pass. Especially if we don’t have the run blocking upfront, or a pound it out type running back.

    I personally like the pro-style, run-first mentality (which was also the same mentality of Urban’s spread offense), but I just don’t want us to fall into the trap of forcing our players to try something that won’t work. See last years offense and JB’s attempt to be Tim Tebow instead of Chris Leak.

  3. aziatic41 says:

    All of our players seem very humble and very hungry which is a very good early sign. We have playmakers on both sides of the ball. Can’t wait for the season to start to see what our team identity will be. Go Gators

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