KJ Jefferson # 1 of the Arkansas Razorbacks. Wesley Hitt / Getty Images / AFP.
The odds of Saturday’s Texas A&M vs. Arkansas matchup have been published by top sportsbooks. The undefeated Razorbacks attempt to defeat the unbeaten Texas A&M, which is also in the top 10.
The game will be played on a neutral site. However, Arlington, Texas is closer to Texas A&M and Arkansas. You should play the spread for this game, for reasons I’ll tell you. Here’s my NCAAF pick!
Texas A&M Aggies vs. Arkansas Razorbacks
Saturday, September 25, 2021 – 3:30 p.m. EDT in the AT&T stadium
Recognizing Aggie’s strengths
While I like Arkansas covering the spread, I think any fair analysis should recognize the other team’s strengths.
Part of my reasoning is that effectively Texas A & M’s strengths don’t matter on Saturday. Particularly the aggie pass defense is outstanding. They rank first in the country when it comes to limiting opposing teams’ pass rating. Because of their strengths, the Aggie defense would prefer a team that relies heavily on passing play.
Until now, Texas A&M has benefited from facing teams that rely much more on passing than Arkansas. Arkansas was at least 28 points ahead of its previous three opponents, Kent State, Colorado, and New Mexico.
Arkansas has nine more teams that pass the ball with less frequency than Arkansas, which means only nine of them are in this category. Because the Razorbacks don’t like passing the ball, the Aggies can only play defense with a very limited range of skills. Because of this, Arkansas is just the adversary the Aggie Defense refuses to face.
Aggie Run Defense
For your betting lines, know that the Texas A&M defense is worrying after the first three games. One statistic that justifies this concern is that Aggies rank 80th nationwide when it comes to limiting opposing rush yards per game.
It is undoubtedly bad, but it doesn’t look that bad. The aggie schedule is the main reason this ranking has been so bad.
Demond Demas #1 of the Texas A&M Aggies. Alex Bierens de Haan / Getty Images / AFP.
Texas A&M faced a team that could easily fail, with one exception: they are low-profile teams who are not attending a Power 5 Conference. The teams far ahead had less motivation to hurry up yards and run. These teams also had a lower offensive line game and less running ability.
Colorado, Texas A & M is the most formidable opponent. It ranks 107th nationally in rush yards per contest. Kent State ranks 55th nationally in rush yards per games, despite having beaten the Aggies by 226 rushing yards. New Mexico is 64th nationally in this category. Despite being subject to much tougher tests, the defense against the Aggies run is still as poor as it can be.
The strength of Arkansas and why it matters
On the offensive, Arkansas’s strength lies precisely in the area where the Aggie defense is weakest. When placing sports bets, keep this in mind.
During the low season, Razorback’s offensive linemen stated that they would be more violent and physical this season. This kind of aggressiveness is a result of the Razorback Run group and pays off. It should be a worry for MAC teams who are reducing their aggie run defense.
Arkansas has a higher focus on the ball and they are keen to run the ball better. For now, Arkansas ranks tenth nationwide for run-play percentage and sixth nationwide for rushing yards per game.
The razorback runners, both running backs and quarterbacks, have more consistency, sparks, and variety than their aggie counterparts. There are four razorbacks rushing for over seven YPC. Trelon Smith is Arkansas’s leading rusher and has an average of 5.1 YPC.
The strength of the Razorbacks is important because it will help them offset serious damage against the aggie run defense. It can be argued that Arkansas, if it is one-dimensional then it cannot do so many damage to the defense against the aggie ran. There are two possible answers. First, the fact that a crime can only be considered one-dimensional doesn’t make it a valid reason to count it. As an example, we saw how a Florida offense without a competent quarterback almost led to senior Alabama being upset. The Razorback Offensive does not have a single-dimensional quarterback.
KJ Jefferson #1 of the Arkansas Razorbacks. Wesley Hitt / Getty Images / AFP.
In terms of fit efficiency and accuracy, KJ Jefferson has improved massively as a quarterback for Arkansas. Additionally, it is a dangerous runner and has a high rate of rushing, giving it a dual threat ability.
Little confidence in the Aggie affair
The main reason Texas A&M is acclaimed and favored in this match is because of its defense. Betting on the Aggie defense is not possible if you don’t like it.
Texas A&M had a poor passing attack. The starter Haynes King was injured and Texas A&M didn’t have a stable quarterback. King also threw three interceptions in the loss to Kent State. Zach Calzada, his replacement and current starter, didn’t complete half of his passes against Colorado. He beat that number against New Mexico by 30 points. After obstructing the Texas passing attack with slightly more success than any other Longhorn opponent, Arkansas deserves your trust in replacing the late Aggie-Quarterback Kellen Mond.
Texas A&M is not as consistent in its run game as Arkansas. It ran for 3.3 YPC in Colorado against a defense ranked national 80 when it comes down to limiting the opposing rush yards per match. The Aggies mainly rely on two running backs who prove to be mixed up and get too little help to improve from an offensive line that is missing four starters from last year and who have to struggle with a defensive line of the Razorbacks, which, among other things, significantly clogs the middle.
NCAAF selection: Razorbacks +5.5 (-110) at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline test)
Blade back +5.5 (-110)
* The selection reflects the line at the moment the author made the game, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Our live odds are a good place to start, as lines can change.
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