Emmitt Smith apologizes for saying Florida QB Jeff Driskel should be benched

Emmitt Smith apologizes for saying Florida QB Jeff Driskel should be benched

Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel struggled mightily in the Gators’ 42-21 loss to Alabama over the weekend. His lackluster play has drawn criticism from Florida fans and even led Florida and NFL legend Emmitt Smith to tweet that Driskel should be benched.

“Put Jeff Driskel on the bench please, I have seen enough,” Smith wrote in a tweet that was later deleted.

Though many fans agree with Smith’s assessment, the longtime Dallas Cowboys running back apologized to Driskel and head coach Will Muschamp.

“To me, to Jeff Driskel and our football team,” Muschamp said, per the Orlando Sentinel. “He was frustrated. He wants us to win. He wants us to be successful. He’s a great Gator. Everybody’s entitled to their opinion. And I appreciate Emmitt calling and saying the things he said, I really do. He’s a class individual, and he’s about all the right things.”

The junior completed just 9-of-28 passes for 93 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions, but the 45-year-old Smith evidently regretted calling out Driskel for his play.

Driskel has had an up-and-down season for the 2-1 Gators. Overall, he has thrown for 636 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions at a 56 percent completion percentage in three games.

Muschamp continues to back Driskel publically, despite clamors to give freshman Treon Harris a shot.

"Jeff gives us the best opportunity to win the game," Muschamp said, via "But Jeff needs to play better. He understands that."

The Gators have a bye this week, so Driskel will have to wait until Oct. 4 to get back on track in a road game against Tennessee.

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Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!