Tennessee football (2-4) makes a trip to take on the Auburn Tigers (4-2) on Saturday evening. Here are the three keys to a Vol victory.
By Steve Wright
Find some offense
This has been a weird year for the Vols. The early season offensive output was good, but for a myriad of reasons the team hasn’t been able to move the ball with any real consistency since that point. The Vols have only gone over 300 yards of offense one time in the last four games – and even that was in a humiliating 31 point loss at the hands of Alabama. Even more of a worry is that this lack of offense – 107 yards passing against Arkansas for example – is happening while the offense line seems to be playing well. Something – either the pass or the run – has to break out here.
Beware a team rounding into form
Auburn may be 4-2, but the Tigers could easily be 2-4 if not for a couple of huge officiating calls going their way (remember the Ole Miss game?). Having said that, the Tigers appear to be playing some of their best football of the season and their last outing was their best of 2020 so far as they beat up LSU. They have leant more on the legs of Tank Bigsby – he had two touchdowns on 15 carries against LSU – and the result is that Bo Nix is forcing he ball downfield less. Tennessee might be playing the Tigers at just the wrong time.
Are the Vols rusty or rested?
The Vols have only played one game of football in nearly a month. That was the 24-13 loss at the hands of Arkansas on 11/7. The Tigers have played even less football because of a combination of bye weeks and Covid-19 cancellations; with their last game being all the way back on Halloween. Auburn is also dealing with quarantine issues on some of the 10 players – and their contacts – who tested positive around their open date on November 7. If the Vols are ready to roll early and they can take advantage of some of the missing Tigers’ starters, then they could put up a lead that Auburn will struggle to run down.
Saturday‘s game kicks off at 6:00 PM CT (7:00 PM ET). You can watch this Tennessee football game on the ESPN Network.