Florida 13, Vanderbilt 6, The Rundown: Gators survive against Vandy in Nashville

It was over when:  Nick Washington picked off Wade Freebeck’s last gasp pass near midfield with under a minute to go. Credit Jarrad Davis for the tip.

Game ball goes to: Jordan Scarlett. The Gators may have finally found their lead tailback after Scarlett broke off several big runs despite being swarmed in the backfield. He scored the game’s only touchdown after juking a defender three yards behind the line of scrimmage before finding the goal line, and that proved to be the difference.

Stat of the game: 4.6. Scarlett was only fed twelve times, but made the most of them by gaining 55 yards on the day. That’s an average of 4.58333, or more succinctly, 4.6. (Maybe feed him more? …but that’s an argument for later.)

What to like: Scarlett looks real promising as the lead tailback if the offensive line can block. And Florida found a way to win a game on the road in the SEC with a backup quarterback. That’s… um, as good as it’g going to get with the positives.

What to work on: We know the offense was bad, but the defense got roasted by Ralph Webb on the ground for the second straight year, this time for 110 yards. With a stat like that, I’d almost hate to speculate what Leonard Fournette will do if he’s healthy. And oh yeah, Florida’s offense managed just 235 yards of offense.

Offensive grade: C-. I’m glad that Austin Appleby got his win as a Florida Gator starting quarterback, because he’ll probably never get another one. Where he looked calm and in control against Tennessee (for a half) he looked jittery and unsettled against the Dores, zipping passes at full force to even the closest receivers. If not for Scarlett, the offense would have graded out as an F.

Defensive grade: B-. The defense was pretty good, as Quincy Wilson and Teez Tabor each picked off a pass and the front four recorded two sacks. The 110 yards surrendered to Webb was concerning for sure, but the defense never let Vanderbilt get any momentum and made sure the game’s outcome was never in doubt.

Special teams grade: B. Eddy Pineiro drilled two field goals and Johnny Townsend kept the Dores at bay with some pretty nice punts. Nothing out of the ordinary, though.

Bottom line: Florida beat Vanderbilt, but they’ll simply have to do better than that if they have any intention of contending for the East. The run defense was horrid and the offense other than Scarlett was mostly nonexistent. Luke Del Rio returning against LSU could fix some things, but this team has its work cut out for it

Scoring recap:

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
FLORIDA 0 10 0 3 13
VANDERBILT 0 3 3 0 6

Scoring plays:

Team Time Play FLA VAN
FLORIDA 2nd 6:27 Jordan Scarlett 4 yd run (PAT good) 7 0
VANDY 2nd 2:13 Tommy Openshaw 38 yd FG good 7 3
FLORIDA 2nd :00 Eddy Pineiro 42 yd FG good 10 3
VANDY 3rd 2:34 Tommy Openshaw 27 yd FG good 10 6
FLORIDA 4th 8:17 Eddy Pineiro 26 yd FG good 13 6

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