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Toney Gone?


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Word coming down overnight (Tuesday to Wednesday, reported on ESPN and now YouTube's "Locked On Gators") are reports that Patrick Toney, Gator DC, is in final negotiations with the Arizona Cardinals to become their Defensive Assistant.
Now, there are those thar will be happy to hear this--blaming as some do on PT for last season's abysmal Gator defense. I am not among them:
We were bad under Mullen the previous season, for one thing...but more importantly, Toney has played a huge part in analyzing, then helping to recruit many of the most talented young players we are beginning to bring in now. To follow and builld on that point, I believe at this point that the above, plus general "reliable continuity" are most important right now.
Further word has Napier and his people targeting Bama's Austin Armstrong as his replacement, but that is very early "quiet backchatter" based on his previous work under Billy at Louisiana.
I hope there IS such a "solid, land-on-our-feet" plan in place, but regardless, the potential consequences on this sudden change now I fear cannot really help us now, at least short term.
I'm hoping those "final negotiations" break down somehow (and we are perhaps then given another season to manage such a change I'm a calmer, more organized fashion?), but let's face it:
This is likely happening now, and here we are at another "damnit WTF?"-moment that raises all kinds of potential problems, questions and confusion--all of the kind we really don't need now.


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This is one rumor that is likely to be true. I like Patrick Toney because he has chemistry with Billy Napier and he seems to be a good recruiter, but it is hard to judge him based on one year with Grantham's recruits and a head coaching change. That being said, the rumors for his replacement could include Alabama ILB Coach Austin Armstrong. Armstrong was a graduate assistant with Napier in 2017-2018.


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Toney gone, Armstrong in as DC (at least the "CO"-DC). I have already voiced my concerns
...On the upside, grabbing Armstong from Alabama (courtesy of his earlier connection to Billy Napier). Despite the "sudden out-of-the-blue" nature of all this, at least there was/is,little sign of floundering confusion here. Moves continue to be made decisively, anyway.
There will be those out there who, if anything, will be GLAD to see PT gone after so little apparent improvement by our woeful defense under him in his first season here...and I've already voiced my cautionary qualifications regarding THAT attitude. He helped to bring in a nice group of improved players through recruiting; Now they will be coached by reportedly one of the more aggressively-minded young defensive thinkers.
My fear of course is that valuable continuity may have once again been damaged by the toxicity of Gator Nation's desire for instant gratification and resulting relentlessly impatient attacks when it isn't immediately forthcoming. Did our shallow masses drive off a "good fit", part of a solid foundation just beginning to settle in here?
That's the danger: whatever upgrade it indeed might turn out to be, the inevitable difficulties inherent in bringing in a new defensive scheme will perhaps undue any of that , at least at first.
Beyond that, we'll just have to see.

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