University of Florida: The Quarterback

A lot of the Florida Gators success over the last 20 year has a lot to do with the play of their quarterbacks. Now you’re probably thinking, “every good college football team has a great quarterback, right?” Not necessarily. Take a look at a team like LSU. They had a stellar defense with a guy like Jordan Jefferson at quarterback. Or even Ohio State today, who recently made a switch at quarterback despite being ranked #2 in the country. Florida has had such great quarterback play that many of them went on to play at the NFL level. Let’s take a look at a couple of them.

Rex Grossman 2000 – 2002

Grossman had a fantastic career at the University of Florida. A Consensus All-American, Grossman was the 2001 Heisman Trophy Runner-up to Eric Crouch of Nebraska. Grossman was also named Associated Press Player of the Year. During his time in Gainesville, Grossman threw for 9,164 yards and 77 touchdowns. His success allowed him to be selected 22nd overall in the 1st round of the 2003 draft by the Chicago Bears. Grossman had a rocky NFL career but played 12 seasons.

Doug Johnson 1997 – 1999

Doug Johnson of Florida

Doug Johnson had a stellar career with the Gators. The one knock on him perhaps is that he didn’t progress as many would have liked. In 1997, he finished with 2,023 yards, 21 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. In 1998, he threw for 2,346 yards, 19 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. During his final year, Johnson threw for 2,574 yards, 20 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. While his numbers were somewhat stagnate, they were impressive nonetheless. Johnson was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Atlanta Falcons and played 7 seasons in the NFL.

Tim Tebow 2007 – 2009

Tim Tebow, the legend. Tim arrived at Florida highly touted. Tebows prolific college career went something like this:

  • 66.4% completion rate
  • 9,285 passing yards
  • 88 touchdowns (against just 16 interceptions)
  • 2,947 rushing yards
  • 57 rushing touchdowns
  • 2x National Champion
  • 2x SEC Champion
  • 3x All-SEC
  • 2007 Heisman Trophy Winner
  • 2008 SEC Offensive Player of the Year

Tebow was a 1st round pick (25th overall) in 2010 by the Denver Broncos. After experiencing some early success, Tebow’s career derailed after stints with the Jets, Patriots and Eagles. He officially has played 2 seasons with the Broncos and 1 with the Jets.

Can Will Grier be the next great Florida quarterback? Only time will tell.

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