It has been nearly 10 years since the Texas A&M Aggies have beaten Missouri. Will the defense do its part and end the streak?
2020 Texas A&M Aggies SEC Defensive Rankings
- 1st in yards per game (317.3)
- 3rd in points per game (21.7)
- 2nd in passing yards per game (225.3)
- 2nd in rushing yards per game (92)
If it was not for Georgia, the Aggies’ defense would have stood out more.
The 13th ranked defense according to SP+, the Aggies should be talked about more going into 2021. While the program has received unwarranted hype in recent memory, they do represent the greatest threat in the SEC West to the Crimson Tide. The defense is projected to improve in 2021, which may be even scarier.
Of course, that is all prediction and may or may not be the case once the first snap happens.
While their yards per game in 2020 were far from dominant according to SEC standards, the Aggies still achieved a 9-1 record in 2020. Defensive coordinator Mike Elko is well-traveled and came to College Station, Tx., after a stop as the Notre Dame Fighting Irish defensive coordinator. He made solid defenses with less talent and figures to use his 3-4 scheme to its full potential with some of the best talents in the country.
Sophomore defensive end DeMarvin Leal looks to lead the Aggies and build into his first-round draft pick potential, following leading the defensive line with 27 tackles and seven tackles for loss.
The linebacking corps does look to be weaker, following losing Buddy Johnson to the Pittsburgh Steelers. On the flip side, the secondary was young in 2020 and enters 2021 with more experience, led by blue-chip recruit cornerback Jaylon Jones.
With an experienced defensive coordinator and up-and-coming talent, the Aggies will be a tough defensive unit for the Tigers to overcome.