Army vs. Navy fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Saturday, December 8
Game Time: 3:00 ET
Venue: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA
Army (9-2) vs. Navy (3-9) Game Preview
One Reason Why Army Will Win
So here’s the main difference between the two teams that run the option offense and rely on controlling games, the tempo, and the clock – Army is better on third downs, and it actually does control games, the tempo, and the clock.
The running game is deadly precise, finishing second in the nation behind Georgia Tech’s attack running for 303 yards per game while during a brilliant job at keeping the chains moving, leading the nation converting 57% of its chances.
It’s not that complicated. Run the ball like Army does, dominate on third downs, and hold the ball for a nation-leading 39:15. Do that, have a fresher defense, and then that group of obviously more effective.
Navy doesn’t convert third down chances – hitting on just 39% of their tries – but it’s able to hold on to the ball and the clock, too. The difference is that the defense doesn’t get off the field like Army’s does.
One Reason Why Navy Will Win
This is Navy’s bowl game.
It’s a cliche, and this rivalry game goes beyond some silly swag-bag exhibition, but Army is off to play Houston in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl in a few weeks. This is the last time several Navy players will ever play football again.
In terms of pure football – and trying to get past the emotion of the game – just like Army, Navy can run the ball. It can hit on the big pass down the field on the few times it gets rid of the ball. It doesn’t commit penalties, and it does most of the little things almost perfectly.
Can Malcolm Perry be Malcolm Perry again? The team’s leading rusher with 1,035 yards and seven touchdowns hasn’t seen much rushing work over the last month, but last year he hit Army for 250 yards and a touchdown. Someone has to get the O going like it’s supposed to.
What’s Going To Happen
As always, the records and the X and O stuff takes a backseat to everyone else. With the backdrop of the passing of George H.W. Bush certain to be a part of the narrative – and with Donald Trump attending – this game should take on a different feel outside of the normal pomp and pageantry.
Football-wise, Army wins in a walk.
Navy has lost eight of its last nine games because the defense just can’t slow anyone down in key moments. It was rolled by Air Force in the first match this year against a fellow option team, and lost to Tulane to close out the regular season.
Army does everything Navy can do, only better.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Army 31, Navy 14
Line: Army -7, o/u: 40
ATS Confidence out of 5: 4
Must See Rating: 4
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