Alabama Football: Keys to Tide Rolling Past Georgia in SEC Championship Game
Believe it or not, the No. 3 Georgia Bulldogs (11-1) are not going to roll over and play dead when they face the No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide (11-1) in the SEC Championship Game on Saturday night.
Georgia is going to try and beat Alabama.
While nobody—myself included—thinks that they'll be successful in doing so, Georgia is a dangerous team that Alabama cannot simply look past.
But, as long as Alabama follows their game plan and pays attention to detail, a trip to Miami to face Notre Dame in the BCS National Championship Game awaits them,
Let's take a look at what the Crimson Tide must do in order to secure a date with the Fighting Irish in January.
Get Pressure on Georgia QB Aaron Murray
South Carolina was able to give Georgia fits earlier this season with a four-man rush. While the Crimson Tide don't have a pass-rusher quite as disruptive as Jadeveon Clowney, they have a number of players who can get to the quarterback, including C.J. Mosley, Denzel Devall and Adrian Hubbard.
Murray struggled mightily against the two best defenses he faced this season—South Carolina and Florida—completing fewer than 45 percent of his passes and throwing four interceptions to only one touchdown.
He's never played well in big games, losing both bowl games and the only other SEC Championship game that he's played in.
Keeping Murray off of his game will be key to the Crimson Tide limiting the Bulldogs' offense.
Account for Jarvis Jones on Every Play
With 72 tackles and 10.5 sacks, Jarvis Jones is one of the elite defensive playmakers in the country, someone that must be accounted for on every play.
He can change the course of a game in an instant.
Alabama's offensive line is going to have their hands full trying to keep him off of A.J. McCarron all day long.
With that said, McCarron will need to get rid of the ball quickly, because even putting a body on Jones won't stop him—it will only temporarily hinder his forward motion.
The guy is an absolute beast, and Alabama's blockers must know where he is at all times.
Win the Turnover Battle
It's simple enough and comes as no surprise to anyone who watches football at any level—winning the turnover battle is key to a team's success.
Both Alabama and Georgia have done a very good job of winning the turnover battle all year. Alabama has 14 more takeaways than giveaways, while Georgia has nine more.
The Crimson Tide typically do an excellent job of protecting the football. They had a total of 11 turnovers all season long, throwing only two interceptions and fumbling nine times.
But Georgia does a great job of forcing fumbles—and recovering them, with 15 fumble recoveries on the year—so keeping the ball off of the ground is an absolute must for Alabama.
As far as forcing turnovers go, getting to Murray early and often will facilitate that.
Georgia has talent on both sides of the ball, but Alabama has more talent at most positions, with the exception of linebacker and in the secondary.
Alabama rolls past Georgia, 34-21.
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