Only three teams have reported to the Auburn-Mississippi game Saturday. They are the New York Jets, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Pittsburgh Steelers.
Despite Auburn moving to No. 15 in the AP Poll after dismantling Arkansas last week, it’s not a surprise so few teams are attending this pivotal SEC West matchup. Only four teams sent reps to that game. So even if Mississippi stayed ranked this week, not many more teams would be in attendance.
While Auburn has two top-tier running backs in Kamryn Pettway and Kerryon Johnson, both on pace for thousand-yard and double-digit touchdown seasons, they’re only underclassmen just like the rest of the other skill positions. The offensive line led by senior guards Alex Koza and Braden Smith should get plenty of attention.
The real attraction for Auburn is on defense where Carl Lawson roams with 6.5 sacks and eight tackles for loss in seven games. NFL teams attending will be looking closely to how he plays as both a defensive end and a linebacker. He’s currently slotted as a top ten selection in the 2017 NFL Draft.
For Mississippi, the opposite is true having an inexperienced defense but seasoned offensive playmakers like senior quarterback Chad Kelly.
Had Kelly jetted for the NFL last season, he might have gone as high as the third round. But staying for his senior season for maturation has possibly hurt his draft stock as he’s seen decreases across the board in both efficiency and overall production. But a great performance against the athletic Auburn defense will help boost his stock again.