Auburn @ Alabama
Auburn has been one of the best offenses in the nation, but the Tigers have found themselves behind in several games. They always found a way to get the lead before the end of the game, though.
Alabama has been the best two-loss team in college football. Even when you look at their two losses, the team didn't play bad. Unlike Auburn, they just weren't able to find the lead by the end of the game.
Lets look at the positions:
QB—Auburn not only has a better QB than Alabama, but maybe the best QB in college football history. Auburn, easily, has the better QB.
RB—Alabama has three of the best running backs in the country, but Auburn has a three-man running attack that isn't far behind them. Slight edge to Alabama.
WR—Alabama has one of the best playmakers in the NCAA. Auburn hasn't had the single big play guy, but they've spread it out between several different guys. Alabama has the better player at the position, but Auburn has shown more depth.
OL—Auburn has the better offensive line. I know Alabama fans do not agree with me on this, but the truth is Auburn is better and it's not close.
DL—Alabama gets pressure on the QB. Auburn has defensive lineman of the year candidate Nick Fairley. Both defensive lines get the job done. I've got the defensive lines for these teams as even.
LB—If Auburn didn't have talent here, there is no way they'd be undefeated. With the weak secondary, the linebackers have bailed them out in coverage all season. This isn't a weak spot for the Tide either, Alabama gets pressure with their linebackers as well as anyone. I have the two teams even at linebacker.
DB—Neither of these two teams can claim to have a good secondary. However, Alabama can claim to have the better defensive backs. Both teams can be had in the secondary, but Alabama, easily, has the better pass defense. The edge goes to Alabama.
Auburn's Keys to Victory
How has Auburn won all season long? Cam Newton. That is the key to beating the Tide. Make them do something 11 other teams couldn't do...Stop Cameron Newton.
Auburn will need to run the ball in the traditional way, and that will open up the beatable secondary of Alabama. I can easily see us finding the kind of success that LSU had against them.
There will be openings in the passing game. Auburn has to catch them looking for the pass, then hit them with the WR reverse. We have found success with that move all season.
The Auburn defensive line has to pressure the QB. If Alabama has time to find the holes in the secondary, they will no doubt find a ton of them.
Auburn needs to use the stunts from the linebackers; make Alabama fear the blitz then pull the linebackers back into coverage. Auburn can get pressure with their front, but the secondary needs the extra help.
Alabama is Like No Team We've Faced
Alabama is better than any team we've faced all season. Unlike many of the other tough games, this one won't be at home.
Alabama is like a combination of several teams we've faced. They have a passing game like South Carolina. It's debatable who's better, but the two teams are similar. They both have the big-play receiver with Jones and Jeffery.
The Alabama plan to beat us will be more like what Arkansas did, only Alabama will run more to make sure the openings are there in our secondary. We can beat their good running backs, but if they catch our linebackers out of position, we're beat by the passing attack.
Georgia is going to be more like the defense Alabama will bring. Maybe even similar to LSU. We will have plenty of chances to beat their defense. With our pass defense we'll need to take advantage of ever opportunity they give us.
Alabama is going to have to beat Cam Newton. That is something not one other team has done. They cannot just shutdown everyone else, because Cam can beat them if they take that approach.
The Tide defense must beat Cam to beat us. I honestly think the chances are going to be there even if Barrett Trotter was playing QB. Alabama doesn't have a secondary that can stop our passing attack.
Auburn has the talent to spread out the defense, and Newton or Trotter are good enough passers to expose their weak points. Alabama, in their two defeats, was simply caught out of position too many times.