Things are getting interesting in the SEC as Georgia moved into the No. 4 spot in the CFP rankings this week. It has its first real road test of the season with a trip to Auburn on Saturday. The Bulldogs were small -2.5 point favorites with an over/under of 41 as of Wednesday.
Georgia has played two true road games this season against Vandy and Tennessee with the most recent one coming more than a month ago. That’s the first reason to back the home underdog and the second is that Georgia hasn’t scored more than 27 points in its last four games.
Auburn may have two losses, but it can compete with almost everyone which was seen in its three-point loss at LSU a couple weeks ago. Sure, the Tigers barely beat Ole Miss last home game, but their defense has the talent to keep this game close.
The Tigers are allowing 3.3 yards per carry and 17.4 points per game, which is impressive given games against the likes of Oregon and LSU. Georgia hasn’t been a team who is going to rack up points, which is why the spread is where it’s at.
The Bulldogs will lean on their ground game as usual with D’Andre Swift averaging 6.3 yards per carry for 921 yards and seven touchdowns. Even when he’s found resistance, he’s been force fed, seen in the 25 carries for 86 yards against Florida.
Jake Fromm may be a good quarterback, but he’s not elite in this offense, averaging 8.0 yards per attempt for 13 touchdowns and he completed just 44.8% of his passes against Mizzou last week.
While the Iron Bowl is in a couple weeks, this game is undoubtedly important if Auburn wants to reach a bigger bowl as it’s currently ranked No. 12 in the CFP.
The problem for the Tigers is that their offense is lack luster, scoring 20 points against the Rebs last game and no more than 20 against Florida or LSU.
It doesn’t help that Georgia has some of the best defensive numbers in the country, allowing 260.3 yards and 10.1 points per game, but a lot of that has to do with schedule.
Either way, Auburn isn’t a major offensive threat with Bo Nix at quarterback. He’s been serviceable as a freshman, but his numbers are lacking overall, completing 56.3% of his passes on 7.3 yards per attempt for 12 touchdowns and six interceptions.
That’s why this is a run-first offense even with top running back JaTarvious Whitlow nursing an injury. If he’s not ready to return, D.J. Williams and Kam Martin will split duties.
Georgia has been the better overall team this season, but in just its third true road game, this will be far from an easy win. Then again, it could go similar to the last couple matchups in which Georgia has won by a combined 55-17 score. However, this Georgia team doesn’t feel the same as those ones, hence the South Carolina loss.
The under has hit in Georgia’s last four SEC games, while Auburn has covered in its last four following an ATS loss and last five following a bye. The under is 5-1 in the last six between these schools and the Bulldogs are 5-1 ATS in those meetings. The favorite is also 8-2 ATS in the last 10.
Our Pick – Georgia -2.5