And just like that, Florida is 3-0 in SEC play and the only undefeated team left in the SEC East. They take on a Missouri team that has won the division the last two years. Are the Gators for real? They are just -5 point favorites (at mybookie.ag) against a team that has yet to beat anyone of significance.
Florida is in a classic letdown situation after absolutely destroying Ole Miss last weekend. The win came out of nowhere as the Gators took down the No. 3 team in the country 38-10. There are still questions about this team, but losing at Missouri seems far-fetched for how they are playing. But don’t forget, Florida’s previous wins were fairly close, even at home against East Carolina.
Missouri has had a similar route to 4-1 with a loss at Kentucky 21-13. However, the Tigers probably have one of the worst offenses in the nation, scoring just 21 points per Game. Quarterback Maty Mauk started the first Four Games, but was benched last week and now he’s suspended indefinitely, so it looks like true freshman Drew Lock will be the starter for the future.
Lock led the Tigers to a 24-10 win over a South Carolina team that just hasn’t looked good. Still, it was impressive for Lock to complete 21-of-28 passes for 2 TDs and no interceptions. He’s going to be an important part to this team going forward if they want to Scorepoints against some of the better SEC teams.
And Florida happens to be one of those better SEC teams. The Gators have been inconsistent defensively, but as seen against Ole Miss, they have plenty of upside. If they play defense like that in this Game, Missouri will run into some trouble.
Missouri’s running Game hasn’t been great either, but Lock seemed to help that aspect out as well. Still, the Tigers don’t have a starting running back that’s averaging over 5.0 yards per carry. Ish Witter had his best showing against South Carolina, while Russell Hansbrough continues to struggle.
For Missouri to have a chance, this Game has to be low scoring, and that was kind of how Florida played until their demolition of Ole Miss.
Freshman Will Grier has been a step up at quarterback this year for the Gators, and that was seen in his outstanding performance against the Rebels. He had by far his best collegiate Game, completing 24-of-29 passes for Four TDs against a good defense. It’d be a stretch for him to match that against another solid defense.
If Grier can continue with some success, it should open up more holes for running back Kelvin Taylor (3.9 yards per carry). But even in a 28-point win, Taylor ran for just 3.1 ypc on 27 carries. This spread is small, but there are plenty of factors working against Florida. This is a letdown situation in addition to the Gators possibly looking ahead to a showdown at LSU the following weekend.
Missouri has won the last two meetings comfortably, but this is a different Florida team. The Gators are now 7-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record and have covered in five straight road Games. Meanwhile, the Tigers haven’t covered in Four straight following a straight-up win.
Our Pick – This Game opened up Florida -4.5 and has moved to -5.5. At +6, we could become very interested in Missouri. Still worried about the Missouri offense as well as the revenge angle for the Gators, but a Letdown is a very real possibility here, factored in with the fact that the Gators had not been dominant until last weeks big win. Missouri +6 or better.