Brantley's return a big lift for Gators

Florida coach Will Muschamp said Wednesday that senior quarterback John Brantley was progressing well in practice and also throwing the ball well this week.

Muschamp reiterated that he expects Brantley to play Saturday against Georgia after he missed the past two games with a high ankle sprain.

The Gators’ passing game has been non-existent during Brantley’s absence. He was injured just before halftime of the Alabama game and had completed 11 of 16 passes for 190 yards, a touchdown and an interception against the Crimson Tide.

In the 10 quarters since Brantley’s injury, the Gators have been limited to a total of 242 passing yards with one touchdown pass and three interceptions.

Brantley obviously opens up the entire offense for Florida, but Muschamp said having Brantley back goes a lot deeper than simply his ability to throw the ball.

“There’s no question, psychologically, as a senior quarterback and how well he was playing and how well we were playing offensively when he was in the game, that it’s a psychological advantage for our entire team [to have him back],” Muschamp said.

“The quarterback position is just such a critical position on your football team. It’s different than any other from the standpoint of having that guy who’s been there and done that and has had success and gives confidence to both sides of the ball and to special teams. It creates good momentum for your team.”