I’m curious to see just how deep into the spring Will Muschamp will continue to tell us that the competition for the starting role at quarterback is wide open. Maybe it’s only fair to say that sophomore Skyler Mornhinweg and true freshman Will Grier have a chance to start, but the reality is the Gators already know who their quarterback is. It’s Jeff Driskel.
Anyone who has watched spring practice can see that. Driskel is clearly UF’s best quarterback (and best fit in Kurt Roper’s spread, up-tempo offense). He’s more physically mature than the others, has a stronger arm and better mechanics, and is a better athlete and runner.
Driskel was the nation’s No. 1 dual-threat quarterback coming out of high school, and his skill set appears a perfect fit for what Roper wants to do with this UF offense.
Just a few weeks ago, Muschamp revealed that when he went in search of a new offensive coordinator in December, he was looking for a guy whose offense would be compatible with the things his quarterback does best. When he said “his quarterback”, he was not talking about Mornhinweg or Grier. He was talking about Driskel.
Muschamp hasn’t said it, but it’s obvious he’s expecting his veteran quarterback (Driskel) to flourish in Roper’s offense. Muschamp was feeling the same way about Driskel in Brent Pease’s offense heading into last season — because in training camp, Driskel had consistently shredded UF’s experienced and talented secondary.
Unfortunately for the Gators (and Driskel), he was knocked out for the season in the first quarter of the third game with a broken lower leg and never had a chance to show everyone what the coaches had seen in August.
Florida fans may not be all that high on Driskel, given some of his past mistakes, but the Florida coaches are. And, from what I’m hearing, so are a lot of coaches and scouts in the NFL.
The bottom line is the real competition at quarterback this spring is the one between Mornhinweg and Grier to decide who is No. 2 behind Driskel.