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Florida Gators 2021 College Football Team Breakdown (Depth Chart, Schedule & Betting Preview)

Matt Gajewski

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2021 Florida Gators College Football season preview schedule depth chart SEC conference betting outlook fantasy picks

No. 11 Florida Gators

2020 Record: 8-4
Returning Starters: Offense No. 5, Defense No. 5

Key Metrics and Personnel

  • Head Coach — Dan Mullen (29-9)
  • Offensive Coordinator — –
  • Defensive Coordinator — Todd Granthan
  • Points/Game — 39.8 (13th)
  • Plays/Game — 71.7 (67th)
  • Pass Rate — 57.33% (8th)
  • Yards/Att R — 4.3 (69th)
  • Yards/Att P — 9.6 (7th)
  • Yards/Att Allowed R — 4.6 (78th)
  • Yards Att Allowed P — 7.8 (85th)
  • Points Allowed/Game — 30.8 (72nd)
  • Vegas Win Total — 9 Over +105, Under -125

Notes

Dan Mullen enters his fourth season as head coach. The Gators lost offensive coordinator Brian Johnson, but Mullen has functioned as the primary play-caller. They promoted Garrick McGee to quarterbacks coach, but that is the only notable replacement on offense. Todd Grantham is still in place as the defensive coordinator. He has occupied this position since 2018.

Recruiting Class: No. 12

Five Star Recruits:

  • Jason Marshall — CB — No. 28

Other Top Recruits:

  • Jeremiah Williams — Edge — No. 73
  • Corey Collier — S — No. 105
  • Carlos Del Rio-Wilson — QB — No. 147
  • Marcus Burke — WR — No. 183
  • Donovan McMillon — S — No. 203
  • Daejon Reynolds — WR — No. 287
  • Chief Borders — LB — No. 307
  • Gage Wilcox — TE — No. 309
  • Justus Boone — DL — No. 332
  • Tyreak Sapp — DL — No. 99 DL

Transfers

  • Jadarrius Perkins (Missouri — CB)
  • Jace Christmann (Mississippi State — K)
  • Daquan Newkirk (Auburn — DT)
  • Antonio Shelton (Penn State — DL)
  • Demarkcus Bowman (Clemson — RB)

Daily Fantasy Players to Watch

QB Emory Jones, WR Jacob Copeland

Florida Gators Depth Charts

Offense: 5 Returning Starters

  • QB: Emory Jones, Anthony Richardson
  • RB: Dameon Pierce, Malik Davis, Demarkcus Bowman
  • WR1: Justin Shorter, Xzavier Henderson
  • WR2: Jacob Copeland, Jordan Pouncey
  • WR3: Rick Wells, Trent Whittemore
  • TE: Kemore Gamble, Keon Zipperer
  • LT: Richard Gouraige, Will Harrod
  • LG: Josh Braun
  • C: Stewart Reese, Griffin McDowell
  • RG: Ethan White, Kingsley Eguakun
  • RT: Jean Delance, Michael Tarquin

Defense: 5 Returning Starters

  • Edge: Zachary Carter
  • DT: Daquan Newkirk
  • DT: Gervon Dexter
  • Edge: Brenton Cox
  • LB: Ventrell Miller
  • LB: Amari Burney
  • CB: Jason Marshall
  • CB: Kaiir Elam
  • CB-N Tre’Vez Johnson
  • S: Trey Dean
  • S: Rashad Torrence

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Florida Gators Breakdown

Florida finished last season 8-4. They lost to Texas A&M (41-38), LSU (37-34), Alabama (52-46) and Oklahoma (55-20) in their bowl game without many starters. They did not have any single-digit wins, but they had two single-digit losses. They return 5 starters on offense and defense.

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At quarterback Florida lost Kyle Trask. Dual threat Emory Jones enters his fourth season with the program. He has completed 64% of his passes for 7.1 yards per attempt to date. He has over 200 rushing yards and a pair of score in each of the last two seasons as a gadget player. Behind him, they will use Anthony Richardson or incoming freshman Carlos Del Rio-Wilson.

At running back Florida returns Dameon Pierce, Malik Davis, Nay’Quan Wright and Lorenzo Lingard, while adding Clemson transfer Demarkcus Bowman. Pierce led the team in rushing with 503 yards and 4 touchdowns on 106 carries (4.7 yards per carry). Davis functioned more as the pass catching back. He rushed 66 times for 310 yards (4.7 yards per carry), but he also caught 31 passes for 377 yards. Wright rushed 54 times and caught 19 balls. This will be a three- or four-man committee.

At receiver, Florida lost Kadarius Toney and Trevon Grimes. Fourth-leading receiver Jacob Copeland returns after catching 38 passes for 435 yards last year. Sixth-leading receiver Justin Shorter caught 25 passes for 268 yards. After that, some combination of Xzavier Henderson, Trent Whittemore, Rick Wells, Jordan Pouncey and any number of incoming freshmen could start/contribute significantly to this offense.

Tight end lost Kyle Pitts. Kemore Gamble caught 10 passes for 160 yards as a complementary piece. Keon Zipperer also caught 11 passes for 145 yards. They should both see time, but this will be a downgrade either way.

Florida’s offensive line lost Stone Forsythe and Brett Heggie at center. 34-game starter Stewart Reese is expected to move to center. Ethan White and Josh Braun both have one start apiece. Jean Delance is a returning starter, and Richard Gouraige started at guard last year. Most projections have him kicking out to tackle for this season.

On defense they lost Tedarrell Slaton, Kyree Campbell, Brad Stewart, Marco Wilson, Donovan Stiner and Shawn Davis. Zachary Carter returns on the defensive line, but Florida added Antonio Shelton and Daquan Newkirk in the transfer portal to help ease their losses. Brenton Cox also has experience in BUCK role. Cox and Carter were both Second-Team All-SEC. Ventrell Miller is a returning Third-Team All-SEC linebacker, and Amari Burney has seven career starts. Mohamoud Diabate also has some starting experience at linebacker. At corner Kaiir Elam is First-Team All-SEC player. Impressive freshman Jason Marshall is expected to start opposite Tre’Vez Johnson playing nickel backer. Trey Dean and Rashad Torrence both have starting experience at safety.

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Florida 2021 Football Schedule

  • Sept. 4 Florida Atlantic 7:30 p.m. Home
  • Sept. 11 South Florida 1:00 p.m. Away
  • Sept. 18 Alabama 3:30 p.m. Home
  • Sept. 25 Tennessee 1:00 p.m. Home
  • Oct. 2 Kentucky 1:00 p.m. Away
  • Oct. 9 Vanderbilt 1:00 p.m. Home
  • Oct. 16 LSU 1:00 p.m. Away
  • Oct. 30 Georgia 3:30 p.m. Neutral
  • Nov. 6 South Carolina 1:00 p.m. Away
  • Nov. 13 Samford 12:00 p.m. Home
  • Nov. 20 Missouri 12:00 p.m. Away
  • Nov. 27 Florida State 12:00 p.m. Home

Florida Football Betting Outlook

Florida plays an easy non-conference schedule, featuring FAU, USF, Samford and Florida State. However, they face Alabama and Georgia in their regular season schedule. They also travel to face an improved LSU team. While most of their schedule is winnable, those three games pose major problems to a potential college football playoff berth. They rack up easy wins over FAU, USF, Vanderbilt, Samford and Florida State. South Carolina, Tennessee and Missouri are also middling opponents.


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Matt Gajewski graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Economics. Matt has worked in the fantasy industry for the past four years, focusing on DFS and Sports Betting. Matt specializes in NFL, College Football, College Basketball, XFL, and MMA. With GPP victories across the major sports, Matt also qualified for the DraftKings 2020 Sports Betting Championship and won a seat to the College Basketball Tourney Mania final.

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