Both teams are lined top to bottom with future NFL stars.
Top NFL Prospects: (Position, Projected Draft Position)
Roquan Smith: LB, 1st Round
Lorenzo Carter: LB, 3rd-4th Round
Davin Bellamy: LB, Day 3
Nick Chubb: RB, 2nd Round
Sony Michel: RB, 2nd Round
Isaiah Wynn: OT, Day 2
Alabama Crimson Tide
Minkah Fitzpatrick: S, Top 10
Ronnie Harrison: S, 1st-2nd Round
Rashaan Evans: LB, 1st Round
Damien Harris: RB, 2nd Round
Bo Scarbrough: RB, Day 3
Calvin Ridley: WR, 1st Round
Da’Ron Payne: DL, 2nd Round
Da’Shawn Hand: DL, Day 2
Anthony Averett: CB, 3rd Round
Not featured on either of those lists are either team’s young quarterbacks; Georgia’s true freshmen Jake Fromm and Alabama sophomore Jalen Hurts. Fromm, who took over for last year’s starter Jacob Eason after Eason suffered a leg injury, has the ability to make every throw in the book and puts the ball right where it needs to be, and rarely makes mistakes. Hurts on the other hand is a powerful runner who is extremely hard to bring down, and can also make big plays with his arm.
The running games for both teams are absolutely stacked. The Bulldogs feature a true, two-headed monster in seniors Nick Chubb and Sony Michel. Chubb is a more traditional, between the tackles back, while Michel is more dangerous on the outside. Behind them on the depth chart is freshmen D’Andre Swift, who in a limited role managed 603 yards on 77 carries for an average of 7.8 yards a carry.
The Crimson Tide also feature a litany of talented backs. While quarterback Hurts plays a major part in the rushing attack, the Tide are led by Damien Harris, who led Bama with 11 touchdowns and a 7.6 yards per carry average. Behind him is Bo Scarbrough, the guy with the really large arms from last season. Scarbrough didn’t quite live up to expectations this season, but still gives Alabama depth at running back, along with top true freshmen Najee Harris.
Defensively, both squads were among the best in college football the season. The Crimson Tide lead the FBS in total defense, and the Bulldogs are 6th, having played one extra game. Alabama has NFL talent at every level of its defense, while Georgia features a younger squad, but boasts a linebacking core who all will likely be playing on Sunday’s next season.
The numbers and the players on the field make one thing very clear, this is going to be a good, old fashion, SEC slug fest. Offensively, Georgia has the potential to be the more explosive of the two teams, as Chubb and Michel can give any defense a tough day. Defensively, both teams are statistically in the same area, but we saw what Oklahoma did to the Bulldogs top defense last week, and Alabama, while not being the high scoring, fast paced offense that the Sooners are, is just as dangerous as they can wear down any defense with their bruising run game, and it also doesn’t hurt having a deep threat like Calvin Ridley.
In what should be an amazing game, I can’t go against the Crimson Tide. Nick Saban’s former assistants have not fared well against him in the past, and while I believe Kirby Smart’s crew will give the Tide the fight of their lives, Bama should be able to ware them down. I’ll be rooting like hell for Georgia, but I’ll put my money on the Tide.