11 straight years. 11 straight losses to Florida for the Volunteers of Tennessee. This is DEFCON 5 for the Vols as they aren’t used to losing streaks and they aren’t used to being perpetually beaten like a drum. Even with the Gators down years recently, the Vols have had the same down years and it has allowed Florida to maintain a streak that started under Urban Meyer.
This year is supposed to be the Volunteers year. They are the better team, or at least were at the start of the season. The Gators quarterback (Del Rio) is out for this game. The Gators have had their fair share of quarterback issues over the past several years and having a mainstay like Del Rio so far this season has been the guiding light of their success. Del Rio should be back in two weeks which plays greatly into the Vols favor.
The Vols have a potent rushing attack, but it hasn’t lived up to what it should be and the passing game isn’t as good as their rushing attack. The defense is very solid. They can stop the run fairly well and are very good against the pass, which will help completely shutdown a Florida passing attack that is questionable under Purdue transfer Austin Appleby. The Gators rushing attack is about on the same level as the Vols. This should make for a fairly decent day for the Volunteers defense.
The Volunteers defense is very solid, but it is out-shined by the best defense in college football. The best defense in football still must dictate for Dobbs to throw the ball. If Dobbs is able to have his way on the ground, that Florida defense will be stretched thin trying to contain Dobbs and Jalen Hurd. Hurd is a tough runner and if he has a couple of holes, he will punish any player who tries to tackle him one on one.
This is a game where strength meets strength. The Gators have a strong defense that will likely be on the field for extended periods due to missing their starting QB and it doesn’t matter how good your defense is, if they are on the field all night, they will make mistakes and become exhausted easily in the second half. The Vols must play a smart game to end the streak. They take this losing streak very seriously and will throw many different looks on offense to spread out the Gators defense and take advantage.
The streak won’t come to an end because they’re basically a tie on offense because Florida is missing Del Rio. The difference is the level in the defense. The Gators defense will step and keep the streak alive.