Florida Football: Gators addressed the offensive line as well as they could in portal

The Gators snagged two of the top ten offensive tackles in the transfer portal

Sep 9, 2023; San Diego, California, USA; UCLA Bruins linebacker Choe Bryant-Strother (9) battles
Sep 9, 2023; San Diego, California, USA; UCLA Bruins linebacker Choe Bryant-Strother (9) battles / Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports
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As the transfer portal opened for business, we here at Hail Florida Hail wrote that the offensive line was an area of need for Florida Football to address, but it also would be a difficult area to address given the general lack of talent that was going to enter the portal.

Now that the dust has settled on the portal, the Gators did snag two of the better options available even if the original thesis of limited options also held true.

Florida Football: Big Boys Up Front

As your quick recap, Florida grabbed Devon Manuel from Arkansas and Brandon Crenshaw-Dickson from San Diego State. Neither was considered elite in 2023, but both were very serviceable linemen who should be able to slot into Florida's offensive line in 2024.

Pro Football Focused released their list of the top ten offensive tackles from this most recent cycle and both Manuel and Crenshaw-Dickson were on their list.

In one breath, it's a good sign for Rob Sale and Billy Napier that they were able to grab among the best available. But it is also a reminder that trying to build an offensive line through the portal is not the best approach a program can take.

While Manuel may have been the 7th highest rated tackle available in the portal, he was the 152nd rated tackle overall last season.

This is why beefing up through recruiting when it comes to the offensive line is still king. Florida has grabbed a highly touted linemen in their past two cycles and just gained the commitment of highly rated Peyton Joseph, but they need to be grabbing more than just one rated guy per class if they intend to bring the offensive line back to stability.