Three Gators in need of a big Spring season to secure 2024 spot

After going on Spring Break, Florida will be back in action

Doug Engle/Gainesville Sun / USA TODAY
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Last week was Spring Break for the University of Florida, and as such Florida Football took the week off as players were given the freedom to leave campus for the week. After some relatively light practices pre break, Florida should start to ramp things up as the Spring Game is fast approaching on April 13.

As such, there are a handful of Gators in need of a big Spring in order to secure their spot for the 2024 season.

Florida Football Spring Practice

1. Damieon George Jr.

Doug Engle / USA TODAY NETWORK

It is no secret that Damieon George struggled at right tackle in 2023. After transferring from Alabama, George slotted in along the outside, even though his more natural position is believed to be guard.

Billy Napier has admitted as much that George was out of place and said that "We had guards playing tackle last season." With new transfers Devon Manuel and Brandon Crenshaw-Dickson in town, Florida has moved George to guard for now.

But with Knijeah Harris, Christian Williams, Riley Simonds, and Roderick Kearney all also competing for spots along the line, nothing is guaranteed for George as he makes the switch over.

2. Bryce Thornton

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8) / Matt Pendleton/Gainesville Sun / USA

After Kamari Wilson left town, it opened up opportunities for Bryce Thornton. He will find himself in competition this year to secure the spot he claimed last season.

Thronton took 319 snaps at safety last season and was inserted as the starter for Vanderbilt and saw three more starts in 2023. Thornton was serviceable and times, but really struggled against LSU and ended the season tied for the fourth most tackles on the team and had a missed tackle rate of 20%.

Jordan Castell by comparison had a missed tackle rate of 10%.

In the offseason Florida went out and grabbed Asa Turner and Trikweze Bridges from the transfer portal, along with the super athletic Gregory Smith as part of the recruiting class of 2024.

3. Kahleil Jackson

Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

Beyond Tre Wilson, Kahleil Jackson is the only returning wide receiver who had more than 200 yards receiving in 2023. Jackson caught 21 passes for 251 yards and one touchdown and saw an uptick in targets once Caleb Douglas went down for the season with his injury.

Given that he is one of Florida's biggest receivers at 6'3" and 215 pounds, Jackson in able to fill a role along the outside that might give him the early advantage. But with Andy Jean and Aidan Mizell ready to step up, Chimere Dike coming town from the transfer portal, and freshman Tank Hawkins capable of outrunning anyone on the team including Wilson, Jackson is far from a lock to see an increase in targets in 2024.