Gators Week 1 QB Starting Odds at BookMaker
Malik Zaire ( -109 ) – Zaire is considered the favorite after transferring to Florida in June. He will only have one year of eligibility as a graduate transfer, but will be able to play immediately.
During his time at Notre Dame, Zaire never really grabbed the reins of the starting job. He played sparingly as a freshman and a lot was expected of him as a sophomore back in 2015. Zaire had an incredible showing against Texas in the opener, leading the Irish to a 38-3 win, but broke his ankle the following week against Virginia and was out the rest of the season.
Last year, Zaire failed to outperform DeShone Kizer and only played sparingly. He decided to seek a transfer after it became evident that Brandon Wimbush would likely be the starter in 2017.
Zaire is a little behind the eight ball with such little time to prepare, but does have quite a bit of experience with a playbook. The odds have shifted in his favor for a reason as there seem to be more questions than answers with any other quarterback.
Feleipe Franks ( +235 ) – The coaching staff is pretty high on Franks after he looked solid in practice during his redshirt season. Franks played better than Kyle Trask while Luke Del Rio was sidelined during spring practiced and outperformed him during the spring game as well.
Franks is a pro-style quarterback and that’s what McElwain is most familiar with. He has had a year to learn the system, which is more than what Zaire has had, and has four years of eligibility left as a redshirt freshman. If he at least keeps the competition close with Zaire, he will likely be the starter.
Luke Del Rio ( +490 ) – This selection would aggravate the fanbase to no end. Del Rio wasn’t very good last season and played poorly against every team except Massachusetts and Kentucky. He has spent the offseason recovering from a shoulder injury and has undergone two shoulder surgeries to try to treat the issue.
Last season, he threw just as many interceptions as touchdowns and Florida won more in spite of him than because of him. He is immobile too and can’t make plays with his feet if the pocket collapses around him.
Kyle Trask ( +1329 ) – Trask seems to be the odd man out in this bunch. He was outplayed by Franks this offseason and missed some time after injuring his knee during spring workouts.
Trask was hyped by many members of the fanbase originally, but that has fizzled out and he seems more likely to transfer in the offseason than remain. The quarterback situation will only get more crowded if five-star recruit Matt Corral honors his commitment and comes aboard, leaving Trask in no man’s land.
Trask has almost zero chance of starting the opener, leaving three options for you to bet.
Florida fans don’t want to hear it, but there is a case to be made for starting Del Rio. The Gators start the season with a tough opponent for the first time in ages, facing Michigan out in Jerryworld.
Michigan’s defense is undergoing a lot of change, but Don Brown will have this unit ready to play. McElwain could give the starting nod to Del Rio for this game only just because he started for half the season in 2016. The coach knows what to expect from him and can be more open with his play-calling than he would be with Zaire or Franks.
Zaire might be the favorite, but the time to jump on him has passed. He was +165 to be the starter for the season opener when these odds came out last week and it’s not worth betting on him at this price. Zaire has yet to prove that he grasps the offense and the last time a Notre Dame transfer ended up at a big school in Florida, it didn’t turn out so well. The two best bets on the board are Franks and Del Rio at these prices.
Bet on current QB Match Up odds at BookMaker