Texas A&M vs. Colorado Preview

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Texas A&M heads into a matchup with the Colorado Buffaloes after the Aggies’ impressive win against Kent State last Saturday. This will be Haynes King‘s first road game, and it will be a tough environment for him at Empower Field. Regardless, the Aggies are heavily favored in this game. They are expected to come out with a victory in this non-conference contest. However, there are key matchups in this game that will decide which team stays undefeated.    

Colorado’s Running Game vs. Texas A&M’s Defense

In Colorado’s game against Northern Colorado, the Buffaloes ran the ball effectively. Impressive rushing performances by Jarek Broussard and Ashaad Clayton-Johnson led Colorado to a 35-7 victory. Broussard picked up 94 yards and averaged a little more than six yards per carry.  Brendon Lewis was a good game-manager at quarterback, and he nearly ran for 50 yards. 

The Aggies’ defense essentially shut down Kent State’s passing game last Saturday, but they struggled against the run. In fact, the Golden Flashes totaled 226 rushing yards. Granted, some of those yards came in garbage time, but the front seven for Texas A&M must tighten up. This is the key matchup in this game, for Colorado’s running game will dictate whether or not the offense scores against Texas A&M.

The Aggies have an elite secondary, and they should be able to limit Lewis in the passing game. If Texas A&M lets  Broussard and Colorado’s offensive line dominate the line of scrimmage, the result of this game could be to similar to LSU vs. UCLA.

Haynes King vs. Colorado’s Secondary

Unsurprisingly, Colorado has one of the better run defenses in the Pac-12. The Buffaloes limited the Northern Colorado Bears to 14 rushing yards, so the Colorado defense will cause some fits for Isaiah Spiller and Ainias Smith.

For this reason, King must step up his game in his first road start. Northern Colorado quarterback Dylan McCaffrey did throw for almost 250 yards against Colorado, so King can make it happen. However, he must limit his turnovers to avoid the Aggies having to play from behind. He threw three interceptions against Kent State, and that will need to improve heading into the SEC matchups. 

If the running backs aren’t effective against Colorado, King can also use his legs to create big plays. He only rushed for 22 yards this past Saturday, but he did make the right decisions when scrambling outside of the pocket. All King has to do is run, get the ball to his playmakers, and avoid any turnovers.

Concluding Thoughts

Texas A&M jumped to fifth in the AP Poll, and the Aggies will look to stay in the top five by beating the Colorado Buffaloes on the road. This matchup is a potential slip-up game for the Aggies, so Jimbo Fisher will need to have his team ready come Saturday. Improvements on both defense and offense are necessary to get Texas A&M prepared for SEC play. Games against middle of the conference teams like Colorado should be the place to make those adjustments before conference play. 

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