From here on out, the LSU Tigers football schedule ramps up in a big way from a competition perspective and it all starts against Auburn this weekend.
It’s been a challenging season thus far for Auburn, and despite their record sitting at 3-1, it doesn’t show the full story on how they’ve looked.
Scraping by in their victory over Missouri with two other wins over Mercer and San Jose State, this team still has some work to do, but LSU is still improving game by game as well.
Here’s an early look at Auburn:
Last weekend against Missouri, the Tigers of Auburn rushed for just 82 yards with an average of 1.8 yards per carry, but it gets worse. With just 3.29 yards per play, it sits them at their lowest average since their 2006 Cotton Bowl matchup against Nebraska.
They rank 100th or worse in passing offense (202.8 yards per game), passing efficiency (121.09), scoring offense (23.8 points per game), sacks allowed (three per game) and third-down efficiency (32 percent), per Al.com.
LSU has the chance to see their defense shine against an Auburn offense that has shown no signs of life this season. Though they have the chance to turn it around at home to get SEC play going, this Tigers defense has proven they’re more than ready to take conference play by storm and it starts with Auburn this Saturday.
Auburn’s starting quarterback, and LSU transfer, TJ Finley was sidelined for their last game against Missouri with a shoulder injury. This also comes after the monstrous signal-caller was benched in their blowout loss to Penn State the week before.
Finley still appears to be their guy, but with an injury concern that could hold him out of this one, it’ll be something to monitor closely as the week progresses. Their backup, Zach Calzada, has been ruled out for the season after opting to undergo shoulder surgery.
Now what? If Finley is out again, the Tigers will look to go with their third string quarterback Robbie Ashford to hold it down for their squad, but his health remains a concern after also suffering an injury against Missouri. LSU will have some film on Ashford after he got the start last week, but as of right now, their quarterback situation is up in the air.
After giving up 41 points in a loss to Penn State in Week 3, this Auburn defense showed improvement in their win over Missouri. Still, this LSU offense should be able to put points on the board with their playmakers that overmatch the Auburn secondary.
This defense is led by outside linebacker Derick Hall who did it all for the Tigers in Saturday afternoon’s win. The senior finished with 6 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, two sacks and one interception to prove this unit still has life.
Auburn is still an SEC foe, so it’s important to never overlook an opponent. With a defense that has the chance to put it all together and offensive weapons that look to prove they can compete, LSU will be in for a challenging game Saturday night, but if the Bayou Bengals begin clicking on all cylinders, it could certainly go their way.