Keys to Victory
The Crimson Tide currently have scored 11 non-offensive touchdowns in 2016 and hold a +4 turnover margin, 2nd best in the SEC West. The Aggies are +6 in turnover margin, best in the SEC West and 12th best in the country.
Last year Kyle Allen threw three pick sixes in a game that the Aggies ultimately lost by 18 points. If the Aggies lose the turnover battle by more than one this game will most certainly be out of reach.
A defensive score of their own would be nice for the Ags, but if nothing else they must stop the Tide defense and special teams from making game-changing plays by playing smart and protecting the football.
Run the Football
Texas A&M ranks first in the SEC in rushing offense (274.3 yards per game). Not only do they rack up a lot of yards, the Ags also have some of the most effective runners in the SEC. Trevor Knight ranks 4th in the nation in yards per carry (7.72) and freshman sensation Treyveon Williams ranks 2nd (8.59).
Alabama is allowing a national best 2.05 yards per carry in 2016 and held Tennessee to just 32 yards on 32 carries – that’s right, a rate of one yard per carry. It’s not going to be an easy task, but if they want to pull out a W on the road they are going to need to find a way to top at least 150 yards rushing.
The Aggie offense ranks 9th in the nation in IsoPPP+ which is an advanced statistic that essentially measures an offenses’ ability to score from any point on the field. The higher the IsoPPP+, the greater the likelihood of the team being able to create an explosive touchdown.
Trevor Knight, Treyveon Williams, Josh Reynolds, Christian Kirk, and Nick Harvey all have touchdowns of greater than 40 yards so far this season and Speedy Noil is always a factor in the return game.
The Tide have done an excellent job of limiting big plays this year, but they have proven to be susceptible to one or two big plays in a game. The Aggies are going to have to make their big plays count.