Meyer offers praise for Brantley

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St. Petersburg Times (Florida)

St. Petersburg Times Staff Writer

John Brantley’s road to becoming the Florida  starting quarterback has been long, and sometimes disappointing, as he waited in the wings. But in retrospect, he insists it was all for the best. Coach Urban Meyer agrees.

Meyer said he has seen phenomenal growth and maturity in Brantley. So much so, he sent a text to the quarterback’s father, John Brantley III.

“John (III) and I are very close,” Meyer said. “There’s not a better family than John and Karen Brantley, and his uncle Scot. I texted him the other day and I had just watched the way Johnny managed practice. I said, ‘Enjoy the ride. Your son is growing up to be a man.’ What he’s done here in the last year has been exactly what we need to have happen. He’s grown up. He’s the leader of this team, and he’s Johnny Brantley, which is good enough for us.”

O-LINE’S DREAM: As part of a new-look offense, the Gators might use more plays under center and more of the running game. Senior OL Carl Johnson said a more traditional offense is exciting. “It’s every hog’s dream to play in the mud,” he said.

INJURY REPORT: OL Matt Patchan (fractured right wrist) and Xavier Nixon (right knee) won’t be the only players sidelined. Senior DT Terron Sanders (sprained knee) will likely be held out as a precaution. Sanders suffered an ACL injury nine months ago. TE Jordan Reed is questionable with a bruised right knee.

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