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LSU Offense Embraces Challenge Against Stingy Gators Defense

No. 5 LSU (5-0) enters Saturday night’s top-10 SEC showdown against No. 7 Florida (6-0) in Death Valley with its sights set on revenge.

A little over a year ago, Florida handed LSU its first loss of last season in a 27-19 contest at the Swamp. Now on their stomping grounds, the Tigers want to return the favor to the Gators.

It goes without saying but there’s certainly no love lost between the bitter rivals.

“I don’t like them very much,” LSU quarterback Joe Burrow said. “I know they don’t like us very much. That’s been the talk around here. You just have to keep your emotions in check with a game like this.”

In order to emerge victorious, LSU’s high-powered offense will need to get the better of Florida’s dominant defense in what figures to be a riveting battle.

Anchored by a Heisman Trophy candidate in Burrow (1,864 yards, 22 touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 216.2 passer rating), LSU ranks No. 3 nationally in total offense. The Tigers average an astounding 54.6 points per game (1st nationally) while also ranking second nationally in total yards per game (517) and passing yards (416) per game.

LSU’s 273 points are the most through five games in SEC history.

LSU coach Ed Orgeron is grateful to have a quarterback the caliber of Burrow leading the offense.

I think Joe Burrow is the perfect quarterback for us at this point in time,” Orgeron said. “He’s smart, he’s a champ, he’s going to stay in the pocket, he’s going to take a hit. And we got outstanding receivers.”

LSU has gotten strong contributions from receivers Justin Jefferson (30 receptions, 547 yards, 7 touchdowns), Ja’Marr Chase (23 receptions, 451 yards, 6 touchdowns) and Terrace Marshall Jr. (20 receptions, 304 yards, 6 touchdowns).

Marshall Jr. (foot) returned to practice this week after sitting out LSU’s 42-6 victory against Utah State.

Meanwhile, Florida ranks No. 17 nationally in total defense allowing just 5 touchdowns and 281 total yards per game.

Orgeron lauds Todd Grantham as “one of the best defensive coordinators in the country” and that Florida has “by far the best pass rush we have seen.”

Florida, coming off a 24-13 victory against then-No. 7 Auburn, has amassed an impressive 26 sacks this season. Linebacker Jonathan Greenard leads the Gators with four sacks.

Additionally, the formidable Gators secondary has tallied 12 interceptions, led by Shawn Davis (3), Marco Wilson (2), Donovan Stiner (2) and Kaiir Elam (2).

However, LSU remains confident in their offensive abilities and refuses to shrink from the moment.

“I think that our guys understand the challenge, our guys understand the teams that we have played,” Orgeron said. “Some of them were not as strong as the ones we’re going to play, but we have been gearing up for this and we’re ready.”

LSU has defeated Florida in four of the last six matchups. Florida leads the all-time series 33-29-3.

Rivalry games like these were a huge lure in Burrow transferring to LSU. The opportunity is there for the Tigers to make a major statement on the national stage.

Burrow intends to seize the moment.

“This is why you play football,” Burrow told CST. “This is why I came here, to play in these SEC games at night.”