2017 Alabama football opponent preview and prediction: Texas A&M

2017 Alabama football opponent preview and prediction: Texas A&M

Counting down to the start of Alabama football’s fall camp Thursday, SEC Country is previewing the Crimson Tide’s 2017 opponents.

Alabama vs. Texas A&M

  • When: Saturday, Oct. 7
  • Kickoff time: TBA
  • Where: Kyle Field, College Station, Texas
  • TV: TBA
  • Last meeting: Alabama defeated Texas A&M 33-14 on Oct. 22, 2016

Texas A&M at a glance

  • Coach: Kevin Sumlin
  • 2016 record: 8-5, 4-4 SEC

Texas A&M players to watch

Christian Kirk | WR

Christian Kirk is an electric talent with a case for being the best wide receiver in the SEC, and one of the best in the country. He can hurt teams from the slot as well as on special teams.

As a true freshman two years ago, Kirk returned a punt for a touchdown against Alabama.

Kirk was the only player in the SEC with more than 80 catches in 2016 (83 for 928 yards), and he led the nation with 3 punt returns for touchdowns.

Armani Watts | DB 

Armani Watts’ 2016 season was cut short because of an injury to his right knee, but he made 56 tackles in nine games last season. He was among an elite group of SEC defenders with at least 2 tackles for loss, interceptions, passes broken up, forced fumbles and recovered fumbles.

Our take

Alabama has essentially broken Texas A&M the last two years. In 2015, the Aggies were 5-0 heading into their contest with the Crimson Tide. Alabama pounded Texas A&M 41-23 in a game that wasn’t as close as the final score indicated. The Aggies finished the season 3-4, including a bowl loss to Louisville.

Last season, the Aggies rolled into Tuscaloosa 6-0. For 2.5 quarters, it looked like Texas A&M was ready to end its losing streak to the Tide. The Aggies took the lead early in the third. But with less than a minute left in the third quarter, disaster struck.

Ryan Anderson blew up a handoff exchange, forcing a fumble that was scooped and returned for a touchdown by Jonathan Allen. The Aggies couldn’t recover and finished 2-4. The two wins came against nonconference opponents New Mexico State and UTSA.

Talent-wise, the 2016 Aggies had the best shot at knocking off Alabama. With so many key pieces gone, it’s hard to see a scenario where Texas A&M pulls an upset even with the game in College Station.

Texas A&M hasn’t defeated Alabama since 2012, and unless Johnny Football walks through the door, that likely won’t change this season.

Prediction

Alabama 34, Texas A&M 17

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The post 2017 Alabama football opponent preview and prediction: Texas A&M appeared first on SEC Country.

Marq Burnett – SEC Country

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