Texas A&M Football: Who will lead the Aggies in tackles in 2021?

Leon O'Neal, Texas A&M Football Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
Leon O'Neal, Texas A&M Football Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports /
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Texas A&M Football
Buddy Johnson, Texas A&M Football Mandatory Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports /

The Texas A&M Football team retains a lot of production from a season ago, but they will be losing a few key parts of a unit that was one of the best in the country in 2020.

Last year’s Aggie defense collected quite a few accolades. Most notably, they led the SEC in yards allowed per game, mainly due to disciplined defense. And at the heart of a disciplined defense, you have to have players making their tackles.

Thankfully, the Aggies’ defense has been extremely well-coached ever since the Jimbo Fisher era began a few years ago. And one of the calling cards of good coaching is having a consistent leader on and off the field.

The Texas A&M Football team will be losing their leading tackler from the past two seasons

Over the course of the past two seasons, one player stepped up as that leader, at least on the stat sheet. That player is Buddy Johnson, who was selected in the 4th round to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Butkus Award semifinalist gave this team as much as he could have during his time with the Aggies, quickly cementing himself as one of the best linebackers in the SEC. But all good things come to an end.

With Johnson departing for the NFL, there will be a lot of production missing in the tackling department. Beyond the now-Steelers linebacker, the next highest tackler on the team collected just over half of the number of tackles as the team’s leader.

That said, the question as to who will lead the team in tackles next season will be front and center this season. So without further ado, here are three candidates to be the Texas A&M Football team’s leading tackler in 2021.