The next step for Jim McElwain and his Florida Gators is figuring out how to have more explosive plays in an offense that ended the 2016 season ranked dead last in the SEC (344 YPG). Of course, that starts with figuring out who on this roster is the kind of quarterback McElwain needs to effectively run his offense, but he's also in the market to find some more playmakers at his skill positions.
Florida could actually be turning the corner when it comes to adequate skill players. And while three-star running back Malik Davis didn't exactly make recruiting waves, he does bring a home-run skill set to Florida's backfield. Davis, who played at Jesuit High in Tampa, Florida, finished the 2017 recruiting cycle ranked as the No. 75 RB in the country but ran for a nation-leading 2,469 yards and 33 touchdowns during his senior season. Davis rushed for 7,025 career yards and averaged 8.5 yards an attempt, including an average of 11.5 yards per carry as a senior.
For whatever reason, Davis wasn't put into the elite category in 2016, but he has shown excellent ability to make big plays in space. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound back could stand to add a few more pounds to his frame to make him a better inside player in the SEC, but the Gators will likely try to take as much advantage of his outside play as they can. That's where he could really excel.
And we know that McElwain isn't afraid to use young guys right away. Antonio Callaway, Tyrie Cleveland and Lamical Perine are just a few guys who saw significant time during their freshman seasons under McElwain at Florida. Davis might not be used as an every-down back for the Gators early, but he could be a situational guy and someone Florida's coaches could use as an outside weapon very early. He could also be a change-of-pace back for Perine and starter Jordan Scarlett.