SEC Football: 5 Players Doomed to Underachieve in 2013
The only way to top a Heisman-winning season is by winning another Heisman or winning a national championship. Neither happens for Johnny Manziel in 2013.
Manziel scored 47 total touchdowns to win the Heisman last season, and though he's one of the best players in college football, he's doomed to underachieve next year.
Along with Manziel, here are four other players that will perform below their expectations in 2013.
Winning two Heismans in a row is something that no person under the age of 38 has ever seen.
Archie Griffin was the only Heisman winner to win the award twice (1974, 1975), but many consider Manziel to have a great opportunity to repeat, considering the fact that he won the award as a freshman.
But realistically, does he really have a chance to repeat in 2013? Think about it this way—what exactly do you think Nick Saban is doing this offseason?
Do you think he's watching tape as normal or do you think he's already devising a plan to stop Manziel? See where this is going?
Saban, along with all SEC coaches, have a great blueprint to work from, as both Florida and LSU did a great job of containing Manziel in the second half last year. The defensive-minded coaches in this league should slow down Manziel just a bit in 2013, therefore costing him a second straight Heisman.
The No. 135 symbolizes every time Avery Williamson wrapped up a defender and brought him down in 2012.
Indeed, the bar was set high by Williamson last season. Can he top it? Eh, the safe answer is no.
As you can imagine, it's incredibly difficult to make 130 tackles in a season, so doing it twice is highly unlikely, unless your name is Luke Kuechly.
As good of a year as Williamson had for the Kentucky Wildcats last season, he might not even be the most talented defender on his club.
With 91 tackles last season, Alvin Dupree was the Robin to Williamson's Batman. With Dupree constantly improving, closing the gap on Williamson is likely in 2013.
You want to stop Vanderbilt? Stop Jordan Matthews.
Matthews is one of the best wide receivers in the SEC, so it's no surprise that he's the best player on Vanderbilt's roster.
Last season, Matthews had 1,323 receiving yards and eight receiving touchdowns. It's going to be hard to come close to those numbers this fall.
The biggest reason why is the absence of Jordan Rodgers.
A brand stinkin' new quarterback takes the reins next season for Vanderbilt. As a result, Matthew's numbers decline.
The Florida Gators have a deep talent pool in the defensive backfield.
The depth that the Gators have acquired may take some production away from their star defensive back Marcus Roberson.
Last season, Roberson had 12 pass breakups, two interceptions and a forced fumble. He was active in the secondary to say the least.
But next season, the additions of Vernon Hargreaves III, Keanu Neal and Marcell Harris may take away from Roberson's production.
In other words, new stars are set to emerge in the secondary for the Florida Gators.
Mississippi State's breakout season rides on the shoulders of Tyler Russell.
Russell is the golden ticket. With most of the offense returning, including Gabe Jackson and LaDarius Perkins, 2013 is undoubtedly the make or break season for Dan Mullen.
But this is the SEC West. No wins are guaranteed when LSU, Alabama, Manziel's Texas A&M and a resurgent Ole Miss take the field.
But maybe the Bulldogs can compete if Russell plays like AJ McCarron did last season for Alabama. Russell threw for 24 touchdowns and 10 interceptions, and though that's not a 10:1 ratio like McCarron, that's still great numbers.
However, unlike McCarron, Russell had his worst performances of the year with the lights shining brightest. Against LSU, Alabama and Northwestern, Russell threw three touchdowns and six interceptions. Many expect Russell to build off of last season's strong year, but the pressure of winning the SEC West is his eventual demise.