The No.10 Alabama Crimson Tide (5-1) have taken awhile to get their offense going. Even during last week’s 27-14 win over Arkansas, it took the Crimson Tide almost three full quarters to earn their first touchdown. Now they hit the road as 3.5 point favorites over No.9 Texas A&M Aggies. Once again, the SEC West is on the line for the Crimson Tide.
Meanwhile, the Aggies are just trying to get a measure of respect back. After two great games against Alabama in the 2012-13 seasons. The Aggies were taken behind the woodshed in a 59-0 defeat. Texas A&M wanted no part of Alabama on that day, so they have a lot to play for this weekend.
No.10 Alabama Crimson Tide vs. No.9 Texas A&M Aggies
As great as the defensive line is for the Aggies, they will be tested up front. When Alabama plays a physical brand of football, they should have the edge in the trenches. However, the Crimson Tide must be careful in obvious passing downs. Myles Garrett (7.5) and Daeshon Hall (5) have combined for 12.5 of the 19 sacks for the Aggies. Therefore, don’t be surprised to see some max protection out of Alabama’s passing game.
The Aggies give up 4.6 yards per carry this season. Conveniently, the Crimson Tide average 4.6 yards per carry. However, Alabama’s main running threat Derrick Henry is gaining 5.5 yards per attempt. He also has 10 rushing touchdowns this season. This is exactly where the Crimson Tide want to hit the Aggies. If they can’t match up front, the Aggies offense will never be on the field.
One way Texas A&M can even up the game is through the turnover margin. However, they only have three interceptions this season. Donovan Wilson is one of their most versatile players on the team. He’s comes into the game with two interceptions, two sacks, three forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery. Wilson is a game breaker for the Aggies defense.
Jacob Coker has been inconsistent in his first season as Alabama’s starting quarterback. He has 11 touchdowns and six interceptions this season. First and foremost, Coker must take care of the ball. Secondly, he has to get the ball to Calvin Ridley. In recent weeks, Ridley has become the main wide receiver for the Crimson Tide. He already has 31 catches, and could be headed for a big day on Saturday.
.Kyle Allen has been as efficient as any quarterback in the country. With 13 touchdowns and two interceptions, Allen has routinely found his offensive weapons for big plays. His favorite target has been freshman sensation Christian Kirk. As a multipurpose back, Kirk can be found anywhere on the field. He averages 16 yards per catch on his 32 receptions. Overall, Kirk has five touchdowns, including a punt return score. In a moment’s notice, Kirk can flip the field with a dazzling play. There’s no question Alabama needs a defensive plan to take Kirk out of the game.
If Alabama has trouble with the spread offense, it will be evident early. It may also lead to turnovers. However, if the Crimson Tide have a handle on the offense, Alabama can stick to their game plan. This game should be close in the end.
Texas A&M 30