As LSU suffered a heavy loss to Alabama a few weeks ago, they are hoping to bounce back against the Aggies. Johnny Manziel is in the hunt for the Heisman trophy as he continues to put up big numbers as well as lead his team after a shaky start to the season with off field issues. With both teams out of contention for the SEC West, it still a important game with both competing to get into a BCS Bowl.
An Aggie program that has come into its own joining from the BIG12, after a impressive debut in 2012 under new Head Coach Kevin Sumlin and the star that is Johnny Manziel winning the Heisman as a RS Freshman. Texas A&M were hoping they could be in the national spotlight again and be BCS Title bound but that isn’t the case after suffering defeats to Iron Bowl rivals Auburn and Alabama who both scored 40+ on them with some costly turnovers and a bad defence to help them along the way.
Texas A&M will have a number of star players heading to the NFL Draft in 2014 including senior OT Jake Matthews after deciding to return for his senior year to play LT after playing RT in 2013 with the LT held by 2nd overall pick Jockeal. Having being declared to play LT, Matthews was switched back to the right side after a injury. Matthews has shown his versatility playing both tackle positions.
Johnny Manziel will be hoping to lead the Aggies to another victory with it likely being his second to last game before he declares for the NFL Draft, the Sophomore has thrown for over 3000 yards including 31 TDs including 11 ints, Manziel has a tendency throwing the ball up in the air and getting careless at times, usually resulting in a turnover. Manziel is an explosive who can turn games on its head, overall he has improved as a player compared to last season where he tended to read his first option then run if he couldn’t find any open but this year he looks for the WR before tucking in the ball and running. Mike Evans 6’5 WR who is having a stellar year with over 1000 yards including 12 TDs and has caught plenty of jump balls of Manziel this season including a spectacular grab against Alabama in week 3, with 3 defenders all vying for the ball somehow Evans was able to catch it, after impressing in 2013 Evans looks likely to go in round one. Opposite Matthews is Cedric Ogbuehi who tookover is spot and has looked quite comofortably playing RT, played guard last season but Luke Joekeal going to the NFL and Matthews coming back Ogbeuhi was moved to RT and possibly play LT if he decides to return for his senior season.
LSU had low expectations coming into this season but after losing 10+ players to the draft it was always going to be difficult with 3 losses this season already it’s unlikely they’ll even feature in a BCS Bowl.
Leading the Tigers is Senior QB, Zach Mettenberger who decided to return for his senior year to improve on his technique as well as improve his stock. With the help of Cam Cameron, Mettenberger has looked a much better QB this season, with him looking much more comfortable in the pocket and his accuracy improving. He a traditional QB who sits in the pocket, at times he is able to invade the rush and get a pass off, throwing for 2,733 yards including 20 TDs.
Majority of those TDs have gone to the WR duo of Odell Beckham Jnr and Jarvis Landry both who are juniors all but likely to declare for the draft and follow number underclassmen in previous years. Beckham Jnr who had over 1,000 yards combined over the last two seasons has had a break out year with 1,051 receiving yards, catching 8 TDs. He hasn’t got the 4.4 speed but a possession type player, who can return punts including a 89 yard punt against Ole Miss. Like Beckham Jnr, Landry has shown improved from a season ago with Mettenberger improving has helped the wide out with 978 receiving yards including 8 TDs and looks to break the 1,000 yard mark this season. Much more quicker and elusive player but lacks consistenty of holding onto the ball but has done a much better job compared to last season. Also on offence they had Alfred Blue a big brusing running back who is used in short yardage and goal line situations and does a good job pass protecting.
On defence they have Anthony Johnson at DT who is another LSU defensive lineman who looking to jump into the first round but hasn’t been consistent enough this season to warrant that. A disruptive tackle at times, getting off the ball quickly and into the back field, losing weight has helped Johnson get quicker. Johnson looks like a prospect who will most likely go on day 2 but he can make a push with 3 Games to go this season.
With plenty of prospects involved and the implications of the bowl this is a match up that shouldn’t be missed.