Florida vs. Georgia Odds & Picks: How to Bet This Top-10 SEC Clash
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images. Pictured: The Georgia Bulldogs.
- The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party deserves the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party Betting Guide.
- No. 8 Florida and No. 5 Georgia will meet in Jacksonville on Saturday in a battle that will almost certainly have postseason implications.
- Check out our staff's best bets with full analysis for the game below.
Florida vs. Georgia Betting Odds
|Florida Odds||+3 [BET NOW]|
|Georgia Odds||-3 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+117/-141 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||54.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||3:30 p.m. ET|
There are few college football traditions on the level of the annual Florida vs. Georgia showdown in Jacksonville. And this year’s contest should be a memorable one.
Both teams enter the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party as top-10 squads in the AP Poll, with the Bulldogs coming in as No. 5 and the Gators sitting at No. 8.
Georgia and Florida sit at first and second, respectively, in the SEC East, making this game even more important for each team’s postseason aspirations.
For that reason, our college football staff analyzed the matchup and came up with their favorite angles for Saturday afternoon’s SEC showdown.
With so much going on, you’re sure to find something worth betting on for Saturday’s SEC Showdown. So, if you haven’t already, download the Action App to get real-time odds, track your bets and follow all of our picks in the app.
Why sweat your betting card alone on the couch? Come join the rest of us in the app this Saturday afternoon.
Florida vs. Georgia Staff Best Bets
Without further ado, let’s dive into each of our nine staff best bets for No. 5 Georgia vs. No. 8 Florida:
- Stuckey | Florida +3
- Mike Ianniello | Florida +3.5
- Darin Gardner | Florida +3.5
- Mike Calabrese | Under 53.5
- Patrick Strollo | Over 52.5
You may hear a lot about Kirby Smart’s past success against Dan Mullen leading up to this SEC showdown that will put the winner in the driver’s seat of the SEC East. They’ve met 11 previous times, including seven meetings when Mullen was at Mississippi State and Smart was the defensive coordinator at Alabama. Smart has won the past 10 meetings, holding Mullen’s teams to 11.7 points per game.
The Gators have also failed to eclipse 280 total yards in the four most recent meetings since Mullen arrived in Gainesville — with the last three decisions all going Georgia’s way. Mullen has only ever topped 20 points once against Smart, which came all the way back in 2008 with Tim Tebow in the SEC Championship.
While all true, I don’t put too much weight into those splits. Smart obviously had an enormous talent edge while at Tuscaloosa, and Mullen didn’t have top-tier offenses his first two seasons in the Swamp. Well, he does now with quarterback Kyle Trask, who has a plethora of weapons at his disposal, led by star tight end Kyle Pitts — arguably the best pass-catcher in all of college football right now.
It’s strength on strength when Florida has the ball with two top-five units going head-to-head. However, I actually give the edge to the Gators since Georgia isn’t at 100% on defense.
- Starters safety Lewis Cine and LB Quay Walker are questionable
- Defensive tackle Jordan Davis is also questionable. He’d be a huge loss along the defensive line, especially since his backup, Julian Rochester, has been ruled out.
- Most importantly, All-American safety Richard LeCounte will not suit up after suffering an injury in a motor accident this past week. LeCounte is one of the best safeties in all of college football who will one day start on Sundays. It’s even more of a blow on Saturday since Georgia will have to face Pitts, who Dan Mullen will move all over the field in order to isolate him in one-on-one situations.
The Georgia offense also has a key injury worth watching in wide receiver George Pickens, who didn’t suit up last week. I do think the Bulldogs will have no issues running the ball with its stable of five-star backs and dominant offensive line against a Florida defense that has been shredded all season long.
That said, I’m not a huge Stetson Bennett fan, and I saw some positive signs from Florida’s defense last week after senior defensive tackle Kyree Campbell returned to the lineup for the first time all season. His presence immediately provided a boost up front, especially since it allowed Zachary Carter to primarily play at defensive end and Brenton Cox (a former five-star recruit who transferred from Georgia) to play Buck.
For the first time all season, Florida’s defense finally resembled a Todd Grantham defense last week. Now, it did come against Missouri, which was missing multiple starters, but I just liked what I saw. Campbell’s presence and the trickle-down effect is huge along a defensive front that lost a lot of NFL talent. (It is worth noting that Carter and linebacker Antwaun Powell will miss the first half due to the brawl against Missouri.)
I just trust Florida’s offense to finish drives more, which is what I believe will be the difference. The Georgia injuries only help the Gators’ cause.
Mike Ianniello: Florida +3.5 [Bet Now]
This is a game of strength vs. strength and weakness vs. weakness. Which matchup will be the most important to decide the winner of the World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party — Florida’s offense against Georgia’s defense, or Georgia’s offense against Florida’s defense?
The Gators offense has been clicking since Game 1 and ranks No. 4 in the country according to SP+. It ranks fourth in Predictive Points Added and sixth in Offensive Success Rate among teams that have played more than one game. Florida averages 7.5 yards per play, fourth-most in the nation.
Yes, Georgia has one of the best defenses in the entire country. It has talent all over the field. But after an unfortunate motorcycle accident last Saturday night, the Bulldogs will be without arguably their best defender in All-American safety Richard LeCounte. LeCounte is third on the team in tackles and leads the Dawgs in interceptions and passes defended.
LeCounte likely would have been instrumental in trying to slow down matchup nightmare Kyle Pitts. The star tight end has seven touchdowns in four games and is averaging 16.14 yards per reception. Without the Bulldogs’ star safety on the field, they could struggle to contain Pitts over the middle.
The Gators defense has taken a huge step back this season. It ranks just 76th in total defense and has allowed 433 yards per game. But is it possible it has turned a corner? After two weeks off due to a COVID-19 outbreak, it returned Saturday and held an improved Missouri team to just 248 yards and 3.9 yards per play. After Missouri went for 220 yards on the ground against a strong Kentucky defense, the Gators limited the Tigers to just 40 yards on 23 rushing attempts last week.
The Georgia offense continues to hold it back from reaching its ceiling as a team. The Bulldogs managed just 14 points against Kentucky last week. In the past two games, Stetson Bennett has thrown five interceptions and just two touchdowns. To make matters worse, Georgia’s top wide receiver George Pickens is questionable with an upper-body injury, so even if he plays, he likely won’t be 100%.
When you think of the Georgia Bulldogs, you think of running the football. Well, Georgia actually hasn’t been as successful running the ball this year as you would expect. The Dawgs are averaging 4.1 yards per carry, which ranks them eighth in the SEC, and they sit sixth in the conference in Rushing Success. The Georgia offense ranks 46th in the country, according to SP+.
We have seen a matchup of the Georgia defense against a top offense already this year in Alabama. And while the Bulldogs were able to give themselves a lead at halftime, the offense eventually won out, and Alabama rolled to a 41-24 win.
Bennett won’t be able to make enough plays to keep up with Kyle Trask and the Gators’ offense, so I would back the Gators at +3.5 and also wouldn’t hate a little moneyline sprinkle.
Darin Gardner: Florida +3.5 [Bet Now]
Georgia is the most talented team in the country based on recruiting ratings, but the Dawgs are going to be impacted pretty significantly by injuries in this game.
Preseason All-American safety Richard LeCounte is out, and also making an appearance on the injury report are starting defensive tackle Jordan Davis (fourth among SEC DTs in Pro Football Focus‘ run defense grade) and wide receiver George Pickens (team leader in receiving yards in 2019 as a true freshman). Kirby Smart did not sound optimistic about either player’s outlook, and if they do play, it will be in a limited role.
It will definitely be a strength-on-strength matchup when Florida has the ball. Among teams with 100+ offensive snaps, the Gators rank fifth in EPA per play and seventh in Success Rate. Florida also ranks fourth in points per drive and third in Finishing Drives (points per trip past the opponent 40). It will be interesting to see whether or not Florida can hit explosive plays in this game. The Gators rank seventh in percentage of plays that gain at least 20 yards (10.2%), but Georgia’s defense also ranks seventh in that category on the other side.
Florida’s defense got off to a terrible start in 2020, but the coaching staff admitted that it was trying several players out at positions they were not used to. With the limited offseason, the players did not have time to get acclimated to new roles. However, the defense was dominant last week against Missouri after the Gators’ layoff due to COVID-19. They held Missouri to a 16.7% Success Rate before garbage time, which was one of the lowest single-game success rates we have seen this season.
One area in which the Florida defense has actually performed well over the entire season is not allowing consistent explosive plays. The Gators rank 29th in percentage of plays allowed that gain at least 20+ yards, and Georgia struggles in that department on offense. The Bulldogs only hit 20+ yard gains on about 5% of offensive plays, which ranks 82nd out of 103 teams. I have this game very close to a pick’em, so I love the Gators getting 3 and a hook.
Mike Calabrese: Under 53.5 [Bet Now]
The Gators and Bulldogs’ annual clash in Duval County has gone under 44 points six times in the last decade.
Here in 2020, Kirby Smart’s defense has already held three conference opponents to 10 points or less, and it appears the UGA staff has begun rationing pass attempts like toilet paper back in March. Stetson Bennett IV attempted just 13 passes last week, and Todd Monken dialed up 43 running plays to bludgeon Kentucky into submission. The game plan will be similar this week against a Florida offense that has punished teams when given extra possessions (.651 points per play, fifth).
Bank on the Bulldogs playing keep -way on a soggy and windswept TIAA Bank Field.
Patrick Strollo: Over 52. 5 [Bet Now]
The Georgia Bulldogs are averaging 29.0 points per game while giving up an average of 16.20. Junior QB Stetson Bennett has thrown for over 1,000 yards this season, completing 58% of his passes for seven touchdowns and five picks. Redshirt sophomore RB Zamir White has rushed for 402 yards and six scores.
Georgia’s offensive Predicted Points Added (PPA) per play is 0.13, which is below the conference average of 0.18. The Bulldogs own an offensive Havoc rating of 0.09, which is below the conference average of 0.11, speaking to their ability to protect Bennett and avoid plays for a loss. Georgia throws the ball on 45% of plays and is successful 38% of the time. Georgia’s defense is one of the best in the SEC so far, having a defensive PPA per play of 0.07 which is second-best in the SEC. Georgia holds a defensive Havoc rate of 0.17, which is in line with the conference average.
The Florida Gators are averaging 42 points per game this season while allowing 29.25 to opponents. The offense is led by redshirt senior Kyle Trask, who has thrown 18 touchdowns this season with only two interceptions. He is completing nearly 70% of his passes.
Florida has an offensive PPA per play of 0.39, which is good for second in the SEC. The Gators also hold an offensive havoc rating of 0.06. Florida is throwing the ball on 58% of plays and completing 53% of passes. The Gators have a defensive PPA per play of 0.23, above the conference average 0.17. They are generating a defensive Havoc rate of 0.17, which is in line with the conference average.
Georgia will look to establish the run game early on against a Florida defense that is giving up 133 yards per game on the ground. This should help open up the passing game for Bennett as the game goes on. Florida will stick with the aerial attack behind Trask. Both defenses are average in defensive Havoc, and the offenses do not give up much Havoc, which should allow ample time for plays to develop.
Based on Passing Success Rates of both teams and the ability of these teams to execute inside the 40, my model has the total at 60. Jacksonville looks to miss most of the bad weather associated with Tropical Depression Eta. The over should be good to 54.