Week six brings us Separation Saturday, and there are plenty of players to watch this weekend. But let’s focus on five key players who will alter their games this weekend:
Jeff Driskel, QB, Florida: LSU struggled last week containing the Towson zone-read and quarterback draws, and I really like Florida to exploit LSU’s defense with a better athlete than what Towson had in Jeff Driskel. We know Trey Burton will play some Wildcat quarterback, but Driskel should have 10-12 designed run plays to keep LSU’s pass rush honest.
Marcus Lattimore, RB, South Carolina: The Gamecocks’ dynamic running back has torched the Bulldogs’ defense each of the last two years, carrying 64 times for 358 yards and three touchdowns, averaging 5.59 yards per carry. Last week’s 23 carries against Kentucky set a new season high for Lattimore since he made his return from the knee injury. I think South Carolina and Spurrier have been waiting for the Georgia game to feed the big horse. I think he touches it 30 times Saturday and should have a big day on the Georgia defense.
Odell Beckham, WR, LSU: The Tigers have struggled in the passing game from lack of protection and with Zach Mettenberger holding the football too long. Florida will work to try and minimize the LSU ground attack and force Mett to make plays through the air. Beckham has to transform and really become that deep threat that Rueben Randle provided last season. Likewise, Beckham will need to make some special plays in the punt return game to really provide good field position for the LSU offense throughout the game against Florida.
Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia: Jarvis Jones gets the most pub on the Georgia defense because he is one of the best linebackers in the country off the edge, but Alec Ogletree really gives the defense a different playmaker at the position. He returned from his suspension last week, and he tipped a pass that was intercepted. He runs like a wide receiver and hits like a linebacker. He’ll be key against Connor Shaw and the zone-read rushing attack Carolina brings to the table.
Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M: Boy, this kid is special. But he’ll be facing a different defense in Ole Miss than what he faced in any other game except Florida. Ole Miss has the athletes to slow him down somewhat. He’s on pace for crazy numbers, and I want to see him do it on the road in the SEC. I’m a believer; don’t get me wrong. But I’m not sure he can keep up this pace of crooked numbers when facing better defenses ahead on the schedule. And Ole Miss is a much improved defense, believe it or not.