Three takeaways from No. 1 Alabama’s win over No. 3 LSU

Is there anyone out there who doesn’t think the Crimson Tide is the best team in college football, now?

No. 1 Alabama dismantled No. 3 LSU at Death Valley on Saturday 29-0, and the game really wasn’t that close.

Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa did finally throw an interception, but the offense was still very good and the defense was equally impressive. Alabama held an LSU team that was averaging 191 rushing yards coming into the game to just 12 yards on the ground.

The Tide are really, really good. They’re the best, honestly, and there’s no argument against that.

Three takeaways from No. 1 Alabama’s win over No. 3 LSU

So this is what Bama’s receivers look like with an actual quarterback

Alabama is constantly sending receivers to the NFL. Since 2011, Julio Jones, Amari Cooper and Calvin Ridley have all been picked in the first 32 and tight end O.J. Howard was also taken in the top 20. Yet, out of the 13 combined seasons those men played for the Tide, just four resulted in 1,000-yard seasons.

But, this year it’s different. Bama has Tagovailoa and another assortment of talented receivers like Henry Ruggs.

How is this for a catch from Alabama’s Henry Ruggs?! ??

Jaylen Waddle.

What a throw & what a freaking catch by the tFR Jaylen Waddle. #DevyWatch

And Jerry Jeudy.

One #Bama 1st play of the 2nd half Tua hits Jerry Jeudy who picks up 30 yards.

Tagovailoa went 29-of-45 passing for 295 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. It was his first INT of the season, and he threw 26 TDs before that one pick.

Catches and plays like these three show both why he has been so good and just how good he is making his receivers.

You can’t go into a game needing Joe Burrow to win it

Joe Burrow is one of the better quarterbacks LSU has had in a few years, and he can be the difference in a close game. However, he cannot be the guy you need to play well in order to win a game, and the Tigers absolutely needed him to do that Saturday.

Burrow can make plays with both his arms and legs, but he’s not so fast that he can dominate teams with either option. He is completing a little more than 50 percent of his passes this year and made virtually no plays of note in the first half versus the Tide.

And that really mattered, because the Tigers were held to negative yards rushing in the first two quarters. That’s not a formula for LSU to win, much less a formula against Alabama. LSU finished with 12 yards rushing. Burrow went 18-of-35 passing for 184 yards and one interception.

That won’t beat the Tide.

Team of the decade?

Let’s get one thing out of the way here: LSU is really, really good.

The Tigers run the ball very well, they are just as going via the pass and their defense is both very talented and fundamentally sound. Alabama, though, is simply in another class. The Tide completely shut down the Tigers offense and scored 29 points against a team giving up just 15.1 coming into the game.

This is the best team that college football has seen in a long time.

It’s hard to say who the best teams have been over the last 10 to 15 years. Clemson’s 2015-16 squad was really good on both sides of the ball, Auburn with Cam Newton under center was both great offensively and had a very good defensive line and Ohio State’s national championship team in 2013-14 was also rock solid.

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It would be hard to argue there have been better teams in that time span than Texas’ national champion team with Vince Young and the USC national champions with Reggie Bush along with a bunch of other good players. But, Alabama is in every single one of those team’s classes including the final two on the list. This team can run with three backs, pick you apart short and deep with a passing game, shut down a running game and force you into mistakes on the pass.

Other than the Tide’s kicking game, there are no weaknesses here. This is shaping up to be the best team we have seen in a long, long time.

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