Sunday, October 19, 2014

Sunday Hangover: Texas A&M

Yesterday's game was like if you combined the offensive performance of the Tide in the 2012 BCS National Championship and the defensive performance of the Tide in the 2011 BCS National Championship.

The Crimson Tide dominated the Aggies yesterday afternoon. 

Halfway through the second quarter it was clear Alabama had broken the spirit of Texas A&M. 

The recently maligned offensive line played well. They paved the the way for 298 net yards rushing and a grand total of 602 net yards gained. Yeldon had a great game (13 for 114 yards), and Derrick Henry amassed 70 yards on 7 carries. Both Tenpenny and Jones got playing time starting in the third quarter. And Blake Sims looked much more comfortable than he did in the two previous games. 

Amari Cooper was back to his old self -- 8 catches for 140 yards and 2 TDs. Alabama still needs to create a consistent set of foils for Cooper. TE O.J. Howard is certainly a player Tide fans want to see emerge as a consistent threat. DeAndrew White has a solid track record. I'm interested in seeing what Chris Black can do, and both true freshman Cam  Sims and redshirt freshman ArDarius Stewart got some playing time. 

As much as the performance by the offense provides hope, I was most impressed by the defense. Alabama's D held A&M to 8 first downs, 31 net yards rushing, and 172 net yards gained. As would be expected with those numbers, Alabama won time of possession, 36:31 to A&M's 23:29. 

My only complaint about the game is most of the kickoffs weren't touchbacks. With that said though, coverage was solid, especially the play of LB Reuben Foster, who reminds me of a violent brick running down the field. 

Next up is the Tide visiting Knoxville to take on the Tennessee Volunteers. Despite their record, the Vols are an improved team, most significantly on the defensive side of the ball. They're going to upset someone this season, and I hope it's not Alabama. 

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