Mississippi State DC Zach Arnett explains what makes Mac Jones so difficult to defend
If Mississippi State has any chance of pulling off an upset at No. 2 Alabama on Saturday night (7:00 p.m. EST/ESPN), they know they’ll have to significantly slow down QB Mac Jones.
The junior quarterback has been spectacular for the undefeated Crimson Tide. Jones has amassed 1,905 yards, 12 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions through Alabama’s 5 games.
Mississippi State defensive coordinator Zach Arnett was effusive in his praise of Jones during a media session on Wednesday.
Anyone that’s thrown for 1,900 yards through five games…am I correct? That’s 400 yards a game. He’s incredibly accurate with the football, puts it right on the money to those guys, and he does a good job of getting it out on time. If teams are dropping back and playing zone, rushing three or four guys, he knows when to hold onto it and let routes get into the windows. And if teams are trying to pressure him and play man, he gets it out and beats the pressure. Not that there’s ever pressure with how good their O line is. And then you’re playing man-to-man on those receivers, that’s a dangerous world to be living in, playing too much man on those guys, because they’re the best in the country.
After upsetting then-No. 6 LSU on the road in Week 1, Mississippi State is now on a 3-game losing streak. Despite the skid, on a somewhat encouraging note, the defense hasn’t allowed over 28 points in the last 3 games.
If the defense can somehow limit Jones and Alabama to around that point total and the offense can get back on track (10 points per game average in the last 3 games), Mississippi State will have a shot for the stunner.