I believe the old adage goes, “the best defense is a great offense,” which on the field of battle makes considerable sense, but I tend to believe the opposite in terms of the gridiron.
The best offense is a great defense, and I’ll tell you why.
The more often a team is able to strike fear into its opponents by way of physical threat, the greater amount of psychological damage it is certain to inflict and thus the more likely it is to win.
Absolutely nothing takes the air right out of an opponent like turning a turnover into points because unlike a precise offensive strike for which one can more likely expect, a turnover that leads to a score negatively impacts the morale of both sides of the ball.
Alabama are allowing a paltry seven points per game six games into the season, which includes three victories over ranked teams (Penn State, Arkansas, Florida) and two shutouts (North Texas, Vanderbilt) thus far.
What is even more incredible is the lack of sacks and turnovers forced by this Alabama team. which, contradictory to popular belief, is an overwhelming positive. While it goes without saying that turnovers are ultimately game-changing, they are not guaranteed to happen every Saturday.
Alabama’s top ranking in spite of its painful lack of takeaways and sacks is a testament to the team's ability to systematically shutdown its opponents and forcing them to punt the ball.
It’s inevitable that the big plays will come, but the fact that Saban’s men don’t depend on them is truly a scary thought to comprehend.