USA Today’s Lindsay Schnell considers Florida to be in trouble without quarterback Luke Del Rio.
As part of her analysis of Saturday’s action, the analyst broke down Del Rio’s season-ending collarbone injury sustained Saturday against Vanderbilt and what it could mean for the Gators in their attempt to win the SEC East once more. Bottom line: She isn’t bullish on Florida after the development.
Check out part of her column below, which appears under the heading, “Florida is in trouble without Luke Del Rio.”
The Gators won and lost Saturday in their 38-24 victory against Vanderbilt. Yes, it’s another notch in the win column and will help Florida defend its back-to-back SEC-East division titles. But there’s no positive spin to put on losing your quarterback. Luke Del Rio, the son of Oakland Raiders coach Jack Del Rio, won the starting job last week after rallying Florida to a comeback win over Kentucky but is now lost for the season after suffering a left shoulder injury. Feleipe Franks filled in nicely for Del Rio, but there’s a reason he was pulled in favor of Del Rio last week. The aftershocks of Del Rio’s injury are likely to be felt all season.
It remains to be seen how Florida will adjust to this situation and how Franks will perform in the starting role. Frankly, Del Rio had been inconsistent throughout his career with the Gators. He threw for 1,358 yards with 8 touchdowns and 8 interceptions last year, before throwing for 138 yards with 1 touchdown and 1 interception this season. He was no Joe Montana by any stretch.
Florida has plenty of issues to work out offensively. But that would have remained the case even if Del Rio had escaped Saturday’s game without a significant injury.
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