David Wunderlich takes a look back at how much Dan Mullen let his quarterbacks (before Trask, of course) run, in order to get some idea how often Florida’s presumed 2021 starter will carry the ball. He found an interesting pattern.
On the other, Mullen has a history of running his mobile quarterbacks a lot initially before backing off later. These rushing attempt figures don’t have sacks taken out because that information isn’t readily available for specific quarterbacks, but the differences in sacks allowed per game for any of the pairs of teams cited is less than one per contest. They’re not enough to change the gaps significantly.
- Tim Tebow: 16.2 rushing attempts per game in 2007, 12.6 in 2008
- Chris Relf: 15.0 per game in 2010, 11.2 in 2011
- Dak Prescott: 16.2 per game in 2014, 12.3 in 2015
- Nick Fitzgerald: 15.0 per game in 2016, 13.5 per game in 2017
Based on that, David thinks ten carries a game is a likely target for Emory Jones. Throw in pass attempts and that means about 55% of Florida’s plays on offense would run though Jones. (That’s actually less than Trask’s 2020 percentage.) I’d say if the Gators’ o-line isn’t improved, that’s not an improbable percentage.
… And with Jones gaining more than six yards per carry behind suspect offensive lines with a heavy run expectation the last two years, it’d be a strategic blunder not to have him carry the ball quite a bit while he throws far less often than his predecessor.
With five good options at running back, at least seven at receiver, and three or four at tight end, there will be plenty of guys around to help Jones from having to do everything himself. Still, if Mullen’s history as a play caller is any real indication, the nature of the offense he’ll be running means he’ll probably be into the low double digits in rushing attempts per game.