Skip to main content

Chasing Emory Jones Down a Priority for UCF Edge Defenders

UCF defensive ends will be charging after Florida quarterback Emory Jones.
  • Author:
  • Publish date:

TAMPA - As the Gasparilla Bowl closes in with three days until kickoff, one of the most important aspects of the game will be how UCF’s edge defenders get after Florida quarterback Emory Jones.

When facing a signal caller with the vast array of athletic skills of Jones, his arsenal of weapons does not necessarily begin with his big-time arm.

During the 2021 regular season, Jones played in all 12 games. He rushed for 696 yards, a 5.2 average, and scored four touchdowns. There were a few games that stood out above the others.

On Sep. 18, in the Swamp, against No. 1 ranked Alabama, Jones led a second half comeback that fell just short, with Florida losing 31-29. Against all of the talented defenders for the Crimson Tide, the Gators main passer was also a main runner. He carried 19 times for 76 yards, a 4.0 average, and one touchdown.

One week after the Alabama game, at home against SEC East rival Tennessee, Jones toted the football 15 times for 144 yards, a 9.6 average. The Gators defeated the Volunteers 38-14. There’s another side to the rushing efforts of Jones, and that’s how the Gators usually lose when he does not do well in the running game.

During a three-game losing stretch for Florida, here are Jones’ rushing statistics: at LSU (10 carries, 16 yards, 1.6 average), Georgia (neutral site in Jacksonville - five carries for 22 yards, 4.4 average, one touchdown), and at South Carolina (11 carries for 26 yards, a 2.6 average).

The key for the defenses of all those teams would be getting after the quarterback and hitting Jones in the backfield, as well as containing him inside the pocket so he cannot be a big-play running threat.

For the game against UCF and defensive ends like Josh Celiscar, Tre’mon Morris-Brash and Big Kat Bryant, their biggest priority will be doing the same thing that LSU, Georgia and South Carolina did. When UCF played good defense this season, more often than not the pass rush played well, and the opposing quarterback found it hard to run the football.

Celiscar finished the 2021 season with 34 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss and three sacks.

Morris-Brash came on strong during the last two-thirds of the season and finished with 21 tackles, 10 tackles for loss and five sacks.

Bryant, meanwhile, registered 50 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and six sacks.

For UCF to defeat Florida, these three edge defenders need to be very consistent with keeping Jones in check in the running game, as well as finding a way to create sacks.

Key Statistic: During UCF’s eight victories, the Knights averaged 3.8 sacks per contest. During the losses, however, the average dropped to one sack per game.

For UCF coverage and recruiting information go to: The Daily Knight podcast. For more college football, UCF and recruiting information, go to Twitter: @fbscout_florida and @UCF_FanNation, as well as the YouTube Channel and Instagram page. Like and Subscribe!

Scroll to Continue

Read More

Recent Articles From Inside The Knights

Gus Malzahn Priming UCF Roster for Big 12 Jump

Former UCF Star Gabriel Davis Making Big Plays in the NFL

Quinn Ewers, Max Johnson, Dillon Gabriel, and Spencer Rattler Start the QB Carousel Spinning

2022 Film Review: Tyler Griffin, UCF Signee

Videos of UCF Walk-On Kicker Colton Boomer

Grading UCF's Offensive Skill Position Recruits

NIL and CFB Recruiting, Heading for a Collision with NCAA Violations and the Court of Law - Part II

NIL and CFB Recruiting, Heading for a Collision with NCAA Violations and the Court of Law - Part I

Why The College Football Playoffs Must Expand

Dillon Gabriel Signs with UCLA

Gabe Dindy, Nasir Bowers, and Keahnist Thompson Sign Letters of Intent at Lakeland HS

What Does Travis Hunter to Jackson State Mean for College Football?

Senior Film Review of UCF Quarterback Commitment Thomas Castellanos

Talking Florida Recruiting, UF Versus UCF, with All Gators Publisher Zach Goodall