Expert picks: Auburn looks to shock the world on Saturday

Now that Thanksgiving dinner is officially over, it is time for everyone to begin preparing for the year’s most important day in the state of Alabama, Iron Bowl Saturday.

The No. 7 Alabama Crimson Tide has an outside shot at making the College Football Playoff but will need to beat Auburn at home in order to keep those dreams alive.

Auburn enters the game with motivation, as they have won two straight games under interim head coachCadillac Williams. Williams has the team playing with an upbeat attitude, and now has confidence that they can pull off the upset at Bryant-Denny Stadium on Saturday.

Before enjoying their Thanksgiving dinners, the staff at Auburn Wire took time to share their predictions for the game, as well as the players that they feel will need to make an impact in order for Auburn to win on Saturday.

Here’s how writers Taylor JonesJ.D. McCarthy, and River Wells see Saturday’s game between Auburn and Alabama playing out.

Iron Bowl: Offensive X-Factor

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Taylor Jones- Robby Ashford

After relying heavily on its’ runing attack the last two games, Auburn will need to find success throwing the football in order to have a shot at beating Alabama on Saturday. The Crimson Tide allows 195 yards per game through the air, so Ashford will need to take advantage and find success by passing.

J.D. McCarthy- Robby Ashford

Alabama has struggled against offenses that have running quarterback and this will be a chance for Ashford to show what he can do.

River Wells- Exterior linemen

Tackles Kilian Zierer and Brendan Coffey are going to have to step up big time when Will Anderson Jr. steps on the field. Anderson likes to wreak havoc on both sides of the line, so the two of them will have to do their best to keep the pocket clean and the running lanes open on the offensive side of the ball.

 

Iron Bowl: Defensive X-Factors

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Taylor Jones-  Jaylin Simpson

Outside of Bryce Young, the Crimson Tide’s top playmakers are running backs Jahmyr Gibbs and Jase McClellan. Jaylin Simpson is Auburn’s highest-graded player against the rush this season, so he will need to be instrumental in limiting Gibbs and McClellan’s production.

J.D. McCarthy- Derick Hall

Bryce Young is everything for Auburn’s offense and if Hall can generate some pressure then the defense will have a chance at slowing him down.

River Wells- Derick Hall

Derick Hall has to do his work on his side of the ball to disrupt Bama quarterback Bryce Young. Young is occasionally volatile under heavy pressure, and creating that is going to be the best shot the Tigers have of winning this one

Iron Bowl: The final score

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Taylor Jones

Alabama 27 Auburn 20

J.D. McCarthy

Alabama 45 Auburn 20

River Wells

Alabama 31 Auburn 24

Story originally appeared on Auburn Wire