For Auburn, enough time has passed to be able to look back and reflect on what could’ve been against LSU.

With 12:50 to go in the first quarter, K Daniel Carlson had, yet again, converted a field goal (48 yards) to give Auburn a 20-0 lead. The offense was continuing to display a balanced approach with QB Jarrett Stidham finding Will Hastings on a 49-yard touchdown pass and RB Kerryon Johnson punching another one in from 4 yards out.

This looked like a team that could compete with any team in the country.

It was about that time that the wheels ran off, and LSU starting chipping away into that lead. As we all know by now, LSU wielded an impressive comeback — outscoring Auburn 27-3 the rest of the game — and the Tigers from Alabama fell for the second time in 2017.

The question now is simple: Where does Auburn go from here?

Auburn does have a relatively soft game in Week 8 against Arkansas followed by an off week, but then they head out for a tough four-game stretch that includes the two best teams in the West (Texas A&M and Alabama) and the best team in the East (Georgia).

Sure, Louisiana-Monroe is sprinkled in there between home games against Georgia and Alabama to provide some relief, but those are all three losable SEC games for Auburn.

The Tigers could finish 10-2 (7-1) and headed to Atlanta or 7-5 (4-4) or anywhere in between. ESPN’s FPI makes them the favorite in four of the final five games.

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The latter would be a long way to fall considering where a lot of people were projecting them — even as recently as the morning of the LSU game.

On the flip side, it’s possible — not likely, but possible — for Auburn to still make the Playoff. There would need to be a lot of things go the Tigers’ way, but they can’t be completely written off yet.

Auburn still has one of the most talented rosters — from top to bottom — in the conference. They have the balance on offense (fourth in the SEC in both passing and rushing offense), and the defense also checks in as the fourth best in the SEC — giving up less than 300 total yards (298.3) per game.

This team is at a fork in the road, and it’ll be interesting to see which path they end up taking as final stretch of the regular season comes into focus.

Stock Up

1. Jeff Holland, Buck: This guy has been an absolute terror this season. Holland is leading the SEC — and is tied for third in the country — in sacks with 6.5 — two of those coming against LSU.

In addition, he leads the team with 10 QB hurries — the next man (Nick Coe) only has four.

2. Kerryon Johnson, RB: Johnson’s first half stats were Heisman-worthy (21 attempts, 121 yards and a TD) but it seemed like the team started to get away from him in the second half. He still received 10 carries, but it just seemed like Auburn lost what had made them so successful early in the game.

That was no fault of Johnson’s, however. He continues to show why he is considered one of the conference’s premier runners.

3. Will Hastings, WR: Hastings made last week’s “stock down” list because he wasn’t being used enough. Well, that certainly changed against LSU. His three receptions may seem a little low, but he actually led the team. On top of that, those three catches led to 65 yards and a touchdown.

Stock Down

1. Auburn’s hot starts: In both of Auburn’s losses, the Tigers blew an early lead after starting hot. The team outscored Clemson and LSU a combined 20-0 in the first quarter before being outscored 39-9 over the course of the other three quarters.

The losses weren’t the only times that Auburn has seen early success in games, but they have to do a better job of consistently keeping the foot on the pedal.

2. Chip Lindsey, OC: It’s hard to make anything of first-year Auburn OC Chip Lindsey. At times, he shows flashes of brilliance, and then at other times, the guy calls 17 straight run plays on first-down — which only nets 50 yards — en route to becoming extremely predictable.

Lindsey has to become more creative to keep opposing defenses on their heels.

3. Jarrett Stidham, QB: Anytime you complete 34.6 percent of your passes for 165 yards, you’re going to make the “stock down” list.

Coming into the game against LSU, Stidham was one of the SEC’s most efficient passers, but that didn’t show. It’s wasn’t entirely his fault, but the environment in Death Valley certainly seemed to rattle the Baylor transfer.

MORE AUBURN: 5 times Auburn has let us down before