Alabama Dominates New Mexico State

Alabama Dominates New Mexico State
TUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA - SEPTEMBER 07: Tua Tagovailoa #13 of the Alabama Crimson Tide looks to pass against the New Mexico State Aggies in the first half at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 07, 2019 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

It was another big win against a smaller conference opponent for the #2 Alabama Crimson Tide. Head coach Nick Saban and his team took advantage of a week after another neutral-site match-up versus the Duke Blue Devils with an easier match-up to fix their mistakes against the New Mexico State Aggies. Many people thought the Tide should’ve not been playing a smaller school like New Mexico State. This game was needed for the team to fix their mistakes and problems they encountered in their win last week against Duke. The Tide gave their fans a show in their home-opener as Alabama Dominates in a 62-10 win.

Tide’s Offense Started Strong

The Tide are looking to become more efficient and productive on the offensive side of the ball after week one. The first play from scrimmage, wide receiver Henry Ruggs III received a backward pass from quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. That play ended up being a 75-yard touchdown run for Ruggs. The next drive concluded with a 21-yard touchdown connection from Tagovailoa to wide receiver Jerry Jeudy. Tagovailoa finished the game in the third quarter by passing for 227 yards and three touchdowns on 16 completions out of 24 attempts. He also rushed for a 25-yard touchdown. Jeudy was the Tide’s leading receiver once again by accounting for 103 yards and three touchdowns. Jeudy now accounts for the second-most receiving career touchdowns in school history with 22 total touchdowns.

Through the first three quarters, the Tide accounted for 595 total yards on offense including 312 yards in the rushing game. The rushing game was an area that the Tide wanted to be more efficient after their week one performance against Duke. Alabama made some changes to the offensive line after the injuries to guard Emil Ekiyor Jr and center Chris Owens. Landon Dickerson got the start at right guard last week but then started at center this past Saturday. Dickerson’s snaps were mostly good with a few high snaps but he was very efficient at creating push for the running game. Running back Najee Harris rushed for 68 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries. Brian Robinson Jr. rushed for 57 yards on 11 carries. Keilan Robinson got a late push for a 74-yard touchdown in the third quarter.

Offensive Reserves Lack Productivity In The Fourth Quarter

While the starters of the Crimson Tide offense dominated through most of the game against the Aggies, the backups struggled throughout the entire fourth quarter. There were plenty of backups that performed well in the third quarter. When the fourth quarter came along, the Crimson Tide only accounted for eight total yards. This was with two drives that both resulted in three and outs. The two drives took a total of about four minutes and twenty seconds off the clock. The eight offensive yards in the fourth quarter resulted in the Crimson Tide to account for a total of 603 yards. This was a game where the reserves needed to build experience for future performances. They also needed to get better so they can be more productive and ready in case of a major injury to the starters. The offensive line has already used two backups as their starters against New Mexico State.

Business As Usual For The Defense

While the main offense provided the high productivity, the Crimson Tide defense handled themselves against the Aggies as usual. Alabama’s defense held the Aggies offense to only 262 total yards on offense. This includes the 161 passing yards from the Aggies due to the Tide’s highly productive pass rush and their efficient secondary. The defense for the Crimson Tide accounted for three pass breakups including one from safety Shyheim Carter. Cornerback Patrick Surtain Jr. also accounted for a pass breakup as well as an interception.

The defensive line for the Crimson Tide was highly disruptive against the Aggies offense. Throughout the game, the defense accounted for seven tackles for loss, three sacks, and eight quarterback hurries. Outside linebacker Anfernee Jennings accounted for three total tackles, two quarterback hurries, one tackle for loss, and one sack. The sack would be his first sack of the season. Defensive end LaBryan Ray accounted for two solo tackles, a sack, and a tackle for loss. Outside linebacker Terrell Lewis accounted for two total tackles, a tackle for loss, and two quarterback hurries. This Crimson Tide defense has many contributors on the defensive line as well as secondary. Even in the young middle linebacker core, the Crimson Tide have highly efficient contributors. True freshman linebacker Shane Lee was responsible for one of two fumble recoveries for the Crimson Tide.

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