Alabama notebook: Collins praises Auburn offense
by Marq Burnett
mburnett@annistonstar.com
Nov 26, 2013 | 1536 views |  0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
TUSCALOOSA -- While he had only seen a few clips of Auburn’s offense at the time, Alabama safety Landon Collins heaped high praise on the Tigers’ offensive attack.

Collins was asked how the Tigers’ offense compared to other offenses the Tide has faced and which it was most similar to.

“Texas A&M, if I had to compare them,” Collins said. “They have a quick quarterback, running back is dynamic and can get down the field.”

Texas A&M and quarterback Johnny Manziel gave Alabama fits for much of their contest and Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall will look to do the same.

Marshall doesn’t have to pass as much (180 passing yards a game) because the Tigers’ running game has been so successful. On the season, Marshall has rushed for 823 yards.

“They have a real good running game,” Alabama's Trey DePriest said. “That's what they do the best. With their running quarterback and him being able to run and throw the ball and it's an option off everything, a chance to run or throw it off every play, so it's going to be tough to stop.”

Yeldon, Drake improve

Alabama sophomore running backs T.J. Yeldon and Kenyan Drake have steadily improved throughout the season. Both have had a few untimely turnovers, but have also given the Tide a consistent ground game.

Both have also garnered respect from their quarterback.

Yeldon has rushed for 1,022 yards and 12 touchdowns. He averages 102.2 yards a game and 6.2 yards a carry.

“He understands the offense,” Tide quarterback AJ McCarron said. “He understands his role a little bit better and what we expect out of him day in and day out. I think that’s the biggest thing. He was a young guy last year. He’s more understanding of role, which helps us as an offense.”

Drake has racked up 661 yards and eight touchdowns. Drake averages 7.5 yards a touch.

“It’s helped a bunch just because it’s another guy to come in and help not only the running attack but in the passing game at the same time,” McCarron said. “He’s getting better in pass protection, so that’s helped us out a bunch.”

Injury update

Left guard Arie Kouandjio returned to practice Tuesday after taking an extra day to rest his twisted ankle. Kouandjio went through drills and showed no signs of being limited during the media’s viewing period.

Right guard Anthony Steen said Kouandjio took a break every three or four snaps and was spelled by fifth-year senior Kellen Williams. Williams filled in for Kouandjio when he went down in the second quarter of last weekend’s game.
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