2. KEYS TO THE SEASON
Biggest Key To The Texas A&M Offense
Get that ground attack going and don’t stop. Pass protection is right up there in importance after allowing a whopping 35 sacks, but the veteran line first and foremost has to get the running game rolling without Trayveon Williams to help the cause. The Aggies ran for over 200 yards seven times last season and went 6-1 – the lone loss coming to Auburn – when they did.
It was one of the biggest improvements under the new coaching staff. The 2017 Aggie ground attack was okay, but it failed to hit the 150-yard mark in any of its last eight games, and lost five of them.
Granted, Clemson, Alabama, and the great Mississippi State D were a part of this, but A&M failed to crank up more than 130 yards – three three worst performances of its season – in three of the four defeats.
Biggest Key To The Texas A&M Defense
Start taking the ball away. The pass rush was great, and there were more than enough plays behind the line to be disruptive, but the defense didn’t take advantage of the chances to do something special.
The 2017 defense generated 22 takeaways, and the 2016 version came up with 24. Last year’s defense under Jimbo Fisher came up with just 11, with a mere nine in the regular season.
In the eight SEC games and the date with Clemson, the Aggies came away with just five takeaways – and two of those were against South Carolina. In all, A&M failed to come up with a turnover in eight games.
Key Player To A Successful Season
RB Jashaun Corbin, Soph.
It’s not like the Aggies don’t have options, but the depth took a big hit when likely top backup Vernon Jackson suffered a neck injury. Cordarrian Richardson is a thumper, and freshman Isaiah Spiller is expected to be terrific, but now the pressure is on Jashaun Corbin to be the new star … and durable.
Last year’s four-star recruit ran for 346 yards and a score, but the running game was almost all about Trayveon Williams and his 271 carries. Corbin won’t have to shoulder that much of the workload, but if and when he’s on, he’ll be a workhorse.
Key Game To The Texas A&M Season
Auburn, Sept. 21
Texas A&M did the near impossible last season and made Tiger QB Jarrett Stidham look great – at least late – in the 28-24 loss.
The two programs have only played nine times, with Auburn winning the last two and three of the last four. This time around, the Aggies need the win, or that’s about it for any SEC West title dreams.
It’s the SEC opener, and with Alabama, Mississippi State, South Carolina, at Georgia, and at LSU – among others – still to go, there can’t be a September conference home loss.
– Texas A&M Schedule Breakdown & Analysis
2018 Texas A&M Fun Stats
– Time of Possession: Texas A&M 34:27 – Opponents 25:26
– Average Yards Per Punt: Texas A&M 51 – Opponents 44.1
– Field Goals: Texas A&M 23-of-33 – Opponents 9-of-18