SEC Picks: TNJN roundtable for week four

Week four is complete with important divisional matchups, rivalry games and more. The roundtable gang is back with analysis and picks for this week of SEC action.

GAINESVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 26, 2015 - quarterback Josh Dobbs #11 of the Tennessee Volunteers celebrates a touchdown during the game between the Florida Gators and the Tennessee Volunteers at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL. Photo By Parker Eidson/Tennessee Athletics

No. 12 Georgia at No. 23 Ole Miss

BradfordOle Miss. After an impressive win over North Carolina to start the season, the Bulldogs have failed to impress. Meanwhile, Ole Miss would easily be the nation’s top team if games ended after one half. Unfortunately for the Rebels, their second half performances have been downright dreadful. But for one night, Swag Kelly and the crew finally close out a game.

MillikenGeorgia. Ole Miss is the first “Power Five” team in over a decade to blow multiple 21-plus point leads in the same season. If the Rebels could play a full 60 minutes, they’d undoubtedly be one of the top teams in the nation. However, playing the what-if game is pointless. This is another game against a quality, ranked opponent, qualities in teams that Ole Miss hasn’t finished games against. A solid game from Eason and a big-time performance by Chubb will give Georgia the slight edge.

OdomOle Miss. David is spot on with his analysis. Georgia looked uninspiring last week until Jacob Eason saved the Bulldogs from despair. Ole Miss, meanwhile, just needs to play well for another quarter or two. Georgia doesn’t have near the talent that Alabama and Florida State have, and that talent won’t be able to keep up with the Rebels.

 

No. 19 Florida at No. 14 Tennessee

BradfordTennessee. Let’s put the streak and all the curses aside for just a moment because neither one of those will factor into Saturday’s outcome. Tennessee has the better team (which they arguably have had in the past two seasons) but they’ll finally close the deal this year. The Vols found success running the ball against the Gators last season and will do the same on Saturday, despite shaky offensive line play. It’ll be a low-scoring affair. Florida is playing backup quarterback Austin Appleby, who has struggled on the road in his career, and Tennessee won’t find success throwing against the Gator secondary. However, the Vols will find enough creative ways to score and finally end the streak.

MillikenFlorida. Eleven straight years Florida has owned Tennessee. For the past handful of seasons, Vol fans have been confident that it was finally time for the streak to end, but it has continued to end in defeat. This year, there is less optimism about the game, as there should be. Tennessee’s offensive line won’t be able to block the Gators’ front seven, and Dobbs and the Vols’ receivers aren’t good enough to beat Florida’s defensive backs. Although Florida comes in with a backup quarterback, the team doesn’t have to score many points to win. The Gators get the win and extend the streak to 12.

Odom –  Florida. Simply put, the Gators’ defense is too good. All notes about the streak aside, Florida’s defense is one of the best, if not the best, defensive squads in the country. Florida’s three wins won’t raise any eyebrows, but no one is doubting the talent on that side of the ball. Tennessee is missing some key defensive pieces and the offense has only looked somewhat impressive in just two quarters all season. Austin Appleby should be able to get the Gators a win with average quarterback play.

 

No. 18 LSU at Auburn

BradfordAuburn. Two words: War Eagle. More words: LSU still doesn’t have a quarterback and they still aren’t anywhere near the offensive threat that can defeat a good Auburn defense on the road. You could counter that Auburn also doesn’t have a quarterback and they feature a lackluster offense, so maybe this game will end in a tie. But I’ll counter with this: Auburn is my favorite team. Case closed.

MillikenLSU. Oh how the tables turn, huh? Less than three weeks ago, LSU hadn’t yet played a game and the team was being touted as perhaps the best team in the nation. However, after three games, the Tigers have fallen in the rankings and in the eyes of fans. The offense has looked atrocious for much of the season, though since Danny Etling was put in it at quarterback, it has looked somewhat better. The defense is still excellent, as are the skill positions — and let’s not forget Leonard Fournette. Those skill positions give LSU the edge. Auburn’s defense has looked good, and it’ll be difficult for the LSU offense to get going. But, the LSU defense has the ability to completely shut down the Auburn offense. Leonard Fournette will provide a few big plays to give LSU the win in a close, defensive matchup.

OdomLSU. What a miserable start to the season for Les Miles and LSU fans. First, the Tigers were upset at Lambeau Field. Then, starting quarterback Brandon Harris was benched in favor of Purdue transfer Danny Etling. And even after all of that, the golden Tigers still look… well, just eh. However, Auburn’s offense isn’t any better, and it doesn’t feature Leonard Fournette. LSU should escape with a victory.

 

No. 17 Arkansas vs No. 10 Texas A&M

BradfordArkansas. There is no more overrated team in the country than Texas A&M. They’re the kings of starting a season great before losing four or five games to quality opponents. Trevor Knight is what he always has been — an inconsistent quarterback. Given all the talent surrounding him, Knight should be much better than he is. The Aggie defensive line is ferocious, but the Hogs’ offensive line will hold up just fine. Johnny Manziel might have returned to College Station, but unless he suits up and works his magic in Arlington — the stadium where his future team plays professional football games — then Knight and Texas A&M will fall.

MillikenTexas A&M. So far in 2016, the Texas A&M Aggies have looked impressive. On the flip side, many have warmed up to the Arkansas Razorbacks, but this matchup doesn’t favor them. Against the only quality opponent so far this year, Arkansas gave up over 500 yards and 38 points to TCU. Arkansas will now face arguably a better offense in Texas A&M. Trevor Knight has been effective for the Aggies so far, the rushing attack has been consistent and the defense is one of the best in the SEC. If the Aggies play like they have through the first three weeks, and can eclipse 200 yards rushing, they should win. I think they do just that and outscore Arkansas in a shootout in Arlington.

OdomArkansas. Trevor Knight’s success so far this season has been highly over-touted. He misses too many throws and a better defense will give him fits. That’s what Arkansas will do to the Aggies this week — cause fits. Austin Allen has been mostly sharp at the helm for the Hogs, who will find revenge for four straight losses in the series.

Other games:

Kent State at No. 1 Alabama

Bradford – Kent State

Milliken – Alabama

Odom – Alabama

Mississippi State at Massachusetts

Bradford – Mississippi State

Milliken – Mississippi State

Odom – Mississippi State

Delaware State at Missouri

Bradford – Missouri

Milliken – Missouri

Odom – Missouri

Vanderbilt at Western Kentucky

Bradford – Vanderbilt

Milliken – Western Kentucky

Odom – Western Kentucky

South Carolina at Kentucky

Bradford – Kentucky

Milliken – Kentucky

Odom – Kentucky

 

Edited by Dalton King 

Featured image by Parker Eidson, courtesy of Tennessee Athletics

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Nathan is a junior at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. He spends most of his free time eating meaningless foods and watching sports. If you wish to contact Nathan, you can email him at wodom3@vols.utk.edu or find him on Twitter, @NathanOdom11.