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Saturday, October 29, 2011
Gators get spark from Brantley

By Chris Low

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Florida was looking for a lift, and so far, so good.

The Gators have been a different team with John Brantley at quarterback. He's clearly not 100 percent coming off the high ankle sprain and hasn't been real nimble, but he's been accurate and made the play of the game thus far.

His 31-yard touchdown pass to tight end Jordan Reed on fourth-and-19 staked Florida to a 7-0 lead in the first quarter.  The senior showed great awareness on the play and stepped way up in the pocket after getting heavy pressure on both edges and threw a strike to Reed.

With Brantley back at the helm, the Gators' passing game all of a sudden has some pop. He's already thrown for 164 yards. That's after the Gators were held to a total of 228 passing yards in their last two games combined while Brantley was injured.

It's also noteworthy that Brantley went to Reed. Offensive coordinator Charlie Weis really likes Reed, and with Brantley back in the lineup, look for the Gators to go to Reed even more, especially now that he's healthy.