Offensive line probems crippled offense

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Florida's offensive line has been the Gators' most disappointing unit in 2011.

The group struggled in pass protection and was only able to open holes in the running game against teams with below-average defensive fronts. The poor play of the line is perhaps the main reason the Gators averaged the second-fewest points (30.7) and passing yards (190.2) per game since 2003, the fewest rushing yards per game since 2002 (144.0), and fewest yards per game (334.2) since 1988.

To be fair, the players were recruited for Urban Meyer's spread-option offense, and coach Will Muschamp wants to run a pro-style offense that features a physical, between-the-tackles running game. The spread-option places more of an emphasis on speed and quickness and creating seams for smaller backs to exploit.