Posted: 9:15 a.m. Friday, Oct. 11, 2013
Whether you consider the LSU Tigers a rival or not (which is a discussion we've had on here a lot and I do not think they are a rival by the definition), it's always a big game and this Saturday is no different. The Florida Gators and Tigers will kickoff at 3:30pm. ET on CBS, which isn't a night game so that's a win right out of the gate.
Remember last year when Zach Mettenberger couldn't throw the ball more than ten yards? I do. Because that was last year. It was hilarious. It was like watching a tape of Jeff Driskel or Tim Tebow worst throws for three hours.
Now, Mettenberger has made like a Peyton Manning turnaround. By no means am I saying that he's like Peyton, I'm just saying that compared to how he was last year, it's a remarkable improvement. Night and day.
LSU's passing game is ranked 27th in the country this year. Which is one of the better passing attacks the Gators will face this year. But hey, it's cool. We've got the best (I don't care about the stats) secondary in the entire country. Our bread and butter is stopping the pass.
And LSU doesn't have the running game to counter that.
Heck, LSU barely has a defense this year. They're 52nd nationally in points against, though that's wait playing UAB, Kent State and Georgia will do to you. I let you think on that.
Play No. 1: Mettenberger's touchdown pass to Odell Beckham against Mississippi State
You can't quite see Beckham in the picture yet (he's at the bottom). But he's one-on-one against the defender and he's going to run a fade/jump ball route into the endzone. As you will see it's not the best throw but Beckham makes a great adjustment on the ball.
As the ball in the air you can see that it's not bad coverage by the defender. He's even got inside position on the play and will stay with Beckham the entire way.
It's a good throw by Mettenberger in the sense that he put it where only his receiver can get it, but it is a bad throw in the sense that it's under thrown a bit. But hey, it works because Beckham makes a great play on the ball by stopping, turning around and squaring his shoulders before attempting the catch.
Beckham even catches the ball at the highest point, which is fine with me because against the Gators' defenders that's unlikely to happen.
Play No. 2: Mettenberger finds Beckham again against Mississippi State
Part of Mettenberger's improvement this year is because of Beckham. He's turning into a very legit No. 1 college receiver in a way that the Gators used to have over the years.
Beckham can even make people miss.
Before we get back to all that, look how Mettenberger looks the defender off of Beckham who is out of the picture (at the top). He quickly looks to the right and then a long look over the middle of the field.
Once Beckham catches the ball, he quickly turns up field, escapes the defenders and outruns the entire defense.
Play No. 3: Mettenberger's pass to Travis Dickson
Mettenberger does a great job of using his tight end here, but I don't think he was going to go anywhere else. The second his foot touches down after his third step, the ball is practically in the air.
When the ball is thrown you can see that Dickson is already behind the linebackers and cornerbacks.
Perfectly thrown ball over the defenders and into space. Dickson will then turn up field and heads for the endzone. Sometimes this type of throw is one of the hardest to complete because he's just so wide open. Just loft the ball and send him on his way.
While I think the Gators match up well with the Tigers here, the game will probably end up closer than the experts think. Last I saw that was around a touchdown. I'll say it's a field goal difference either way.
Gators win 23-20.