GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- In his days at Murphy High back in Mobile, Ala., Solomon Patton was his offense’s featured playmaker.
Bubble screens, quick flares, slants from the slot; anything to get him the ball in space.
“Love ‘em,” Patton said Tuesday.
Florida offensive coordinator Brent Pease loves calling ‘em, too. Four times in two games, Patton has come in motion and taken a quick handoff from Jeff Driskel and sped for the edge and the results suggest we could see the play again Saturday when the 17th-ranked Gators (2-0, 1-0) face rival and 24th-ranked Tennessee (2-0, 0-0) at Knoxville.
All told, the “jet sweep” has netted 37 yards and first downs on three of the four carries, including a big one on the final, game-killing drive last weekend in UF’s big 20-17 comeback road win at Texas A&M.
The 5-foot-9, 169-pound Patton (a.k.a. "Solo") is using his speed to find a niche role in the Gators’ new offense -- he called the comparisons to Chris Rainey a “big compliment” -- but he’s also waiting to do what he came to Florida to do.
He is, after all, listed on the roster as a wide receiver.
“Believe me, I know,” said Patton, who has just seven catches for 62 yards and no touchdowns in his UF career. “I’m hoping my time comes soon, especially after playing against Texas A&M and making a couple big plays. I’d love to get a chance to actually catch a ball and try to do something with it.”
“The coaches say it’s coming soon.”