This is a matchup of two of the best defenses in the country, so this one is going to come down to which offense can take advantage of what could limited opportunities to score. From the opening kickoff to the final whistle we break down the best ways to wager the odds for this pivotal SEC showdown.
GEORGIA BULLDOGS AT AUBURN TIGERS (-3, 41)
As mentioned, these are two of the best defenses in the nation, with Auburn ranking third in Football Outsiders Defensive FEI ratings and Georgia sits just behind at fourth. But when it comes to scoring, its actually been the Tigers not the Bulldogs who have been getting off to better starts on offense.
Auburn is averaging 32.7 points and 425.1 yards per game and rank 21st in first quarter points per game at 8.6, while Georgia comes in at 6.2 in that category. And in the Bulldogs games against good competition (Notre Dame, South Carolina, Kentucky, Florida, Mizzu) they have scored just 13 first quarter points combined. We like Auburn to ride its home field advantage to the first score in this ball game.
Pick: Team To Score First - Auburn (-110)
FIRST HALF BET
While we like Auburn to score first, that doesn’t mean we like there to be a whole lot of scoring in general. Both of these teams are run-first when it comes to offense, running the ball more than 56 percent of the time. Georgia ranks 23rd in rush yards per game at 217.1 per contest, while Auburn totals 219.8 rushing yards per game.
With the focus on running the football and two elite defenses to boot, this game has all the making of a classic hard-hitting, low-scoring affair. Particularly early on as these teams try and figure each other out.
Pick: Under 20 First Half Total
Auburn quarterback Bo Nix will be the key to this game. The true freshman quarterback has been much better at home this season, but all of his toughest matchups have been on the road.
Nix has thrown for 675 yards in his last two home games, but that came against Mississippi State and Ole Miss. While against better defenses (LSU, Florida and Oregon) Nix completed less than 50 percent of his passes for an average 159.7 yards per game. And Georgia is a good defense.
Nix can be successful in this game without eclipsing his passing total, particularly because the run game is going to be so important in this one. He’ll probably make one or two big throws and a few more with his legs, but he should stay Under this number.
Pick: Bo Nix Under 177.5 Passing Yards
FULL GAME TOTAL
Auburn boasts one of the most fearsome defenses in the country, particularly the defensive front, which has multiple future NFLers. And it will be interesting to see how effective the Bulldogs run-game will be against that front which allows just 3.3 yards per carry.
The matter of the fact is that Georgia has not played all that well against good defenses. Jake Fromm has been inconsistent, resulting in them ranking sixth in scoring in conference play and against the likes of Notre Dame, South Carolina, and Florida they averaged just over 21 points per game. And Auburn is the best defense they have faced to date.
While Nix has shown flashes, you can definitely say he is inconsistent. And the Georgia defense is no joke. This one will be a defensive battle from start to finish.
Pick: Under 41
FULL GAME SIDE
Auburn is coming off a bye after a bit of a disappointing showing from the offense in a 20-14 win over Ole Miss, but that is understandable in a traditional letdown spot after its near upset over now No. 1 ranked LSU.
In fact, no team has stacked up better against LSU this season. Auburn held the other Tigers to just 23 points in Death Valley. LSU’s next lowest points scored this season was 36.
Auburn's two losses have come against the No. 1 and No. 11 ranked teams in the country, while Georgia has a bad loss at home to South Carolina.
The Tigers could also get a boost on offense with top running back JaTarvious Whitlow expected to be a full go for this one. If Nix can limit the turnovers and make a couple of key plays the Tigers will have a chance to win this outright, so take the points with the home team.
Pick: Auburn +3
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