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SEC Football Pick
After last week's win over LSU, it looks like Florida is once again an elite team. They now get to go to Vanderbilt in what could become a trap game for them because their two games that follow this one are against No. 3 South Carolina and No. 14 Georgia. Vandy, or any other SEC team for that matter, should not be overlooked. The Commodores are coming off a road win at Missouri. In their first game of the season, they fought with the Gamecocks the entire way, losing 17-13. The 48-3 loss at Georgia may not have been as positive, but that was the only game that they have given up more than 23 points in.
Florida isn't quite the juggernaut that Georgia is offensively and this one could end up being close. That's why the line for the Gators is only just above a touchdown.
Jeff Driskel has been solid in his first season as the starting QB for Florida, not making many mistakes. He's completing close to 70 percent of his passes for 759 yards, four TDs and just one interception. Driskel also has 46 carries for 149 yards. This team's offense is very reminiscent of the Tim Tebow days. It's very run heavy, with 236 team rushes compared to 97 pass attempts. Senior running back Mike Gillislee has the first major opportunity of his career and he's done well compiling 548 yards and seven TDs on 103 carries.
This isn't very comforting for the Commodores outlook as they have had trouble stopping the run this season. In their four big conference matches this year, they have yet to allow under 150 rushing yards, including 302 given up to Georgia.
They'll need to figure out the Gators defense if they want to pull out a win. Florida has given up six points in their last two games, but in their first two SEC road games they gave up a combined 37 points to Texas A&M and Tennessee.
Vanderbilt's offense has been mediocre at best this year. Excluding their 48-point performance against Presbyterian, the most points they have scored was 19 against Missouri last week. That probably won't cut it against the Gators. QB Jordan Rodgers is having trouble getting anything going for the team. He's completing 55 percent of his passes and only has two TDs with two INTs. There are only two receivers with more than five catches on the team. Jordan Matthews has 35 receptions for 486 yards and Chris Boyd has 18 catches for 368 yards. Zac Stacy has led the ground game, but even in the losses, he never had more than 13 carries. He has 75 rushes for 413 yards and three TDs on the season.
Florida won last year's game 26-21 down in Gainesville. They had a much different offense last year, but not better by any means. Rodgers actually threw for 297 yards and two TDs in that contest, so that should give him some confidence that he can throw on the Gators.
The last time Vandy won in the series was back in 1988, and yes, they play every year. Also in that line, the Gators are 5-2 against the spread in their last seven meetings, in addition to the road team covering in four straight games. For the season, Florida has covered four straight games. The over has hit six times in their last seven meetings. Meanwhile, the Commodores are an impressive 9-1 ATS in their last 10 home games.
We have Florida on top here but not by as wide of a margin as you might think. Our model shows a 21-10 Florida win and takes into account a tough close loss for Vandy against South Carolina and Vandy knocking off Missouri. You also have to consider the potential for a let down here for the Gators after last weeks huge win over LSU. This is a Gator call for us, but we'd advise proceeding with caution here. Just a lean, Florida -8.5
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