Florida fans everywhere are going googly eyed over Tyler Murphy. The question is should you believe the hype? Hail Florida Hail compares Tyler Murphy’s first start to some others in Florida history.
Tyler Murphy vs. Kentucky
Stats: 15/18 (83.3%), 156 yards, 1 touchdown, 1 interception. 7 rushes, 36 yards, 1 touchdown.
Blurb: Kentucky went into the game ranked 49th in the country in total defense (367 ypg). Murphy started the game with 13 straight completions before throwing his first pass not caught by a Gator. It was intercepted Wildcat Josh Forrest. Muschamp however did not blame the pick on Murphy. He certainly made some big plays but was not forced to do much in the second half.
Jeff Driskel vs. Texas A&M
Stats: 13/16 (81.3%), 162 yards. 14 rushes, 8 yards. 0 touchdowns.
Blurb: While Driskel did play QB most of the game against Bowling Green, Jacoby Brissett took the first snap at QB while Driskel lined up as WR. This makes the Texas A&M game his first career start. He was harassed constantly in the pocket, being sacked a total of eight times. At the same time, he made some big plays, completing a 39 yard pass and running for 21 huge yards. While unlike Murphy, Driskel didn’t account for any touchdowns, he didn’t turn the ball over.
John Brantley vs. Miami (OH)
Stats: 17/25 (68%), 113 yards, 2 touchdowns. 3 rushes, -9 yards.
Blurb: While his stat line doesn’t look too bad. It was a day to forget for the Gators. Even though they beat Miami, there were fumbles and flags to go around. In addition, Brantley fumbled too many snaps to count. It was a sign of the days to come for the Gator Nation.
Tim Tebow vs. Western Kentucky
Stats: 13/17 (76.5%), 300 yards, 3 touchdowns. 8 rushes, 38 yards, 1 touchdown
Blurb: While completing the same amount of passes as Driskel’s first start, Tebow threw for almost double the yards. Granted Western Kentucky and Texas A&M are vastly different defenses. The Hilltoppers were just beginning their transition to FBS football. Looking back, the caliber of receivers Tebow was throwing to was amazing. All six who caught a pass during the game have played in the NFL at some point.
Chris Leak vs. Kentucky
Stats: 20/35 (57.1%), 268 yards, 2 touchdowns, 2 interceptions. 8 rushes, 0 yards.
Blurb: Leak, like Murphy, made his first career start against Kentucky in Lexington. The Gator great made some great passes, most to Carlos Perez. He threw two costly interceptions, but the Gators found a way to recover from a third quarter deficit to defeat the Wildcats.
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