Sure, Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel torched top-ranked Alabama for 562 total yards and five touchdowns. He was responsible, in large part, for the most total yards (626) ever allowed in Crimson Tide history. But Saturday’s game revealed a glaring weakness in Johnny Football’s skill-set.
After rushing out to lightning-fast 14-0 lead, sending the 12th Man into a frenzy, A&M gave up 28-straight to Alabama to close the first half. At the start of the third quarter, the Aggies forced a quick Tide punt and were looking to get back into game on the ensuing drive.
Following a nine-yard scamper on first down, Manziel looked deep on 2nd-and-1 from the A&M 43-yard-line. The Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback sent a pass sailing toward wide receiver Travis Labhart inside the Alabama 35-yard line. But the ball was a bit underthrown, and Alabama defensive back Jarrick Williams deflected the pass high into the air at Kyle Field.
Alabama safety Vinnie Sunseri ran under the fluttering ball and then was off to the races. After Sunseri weaved around several Aggies players, he turned the tables on the elusive Manziel. Sunseri juked right and No. 2 was left sliding by him in futility, in much the same way Manziel frustrates opposing defenders week in and week out.
The 73-yard interception return touchdown pushed Alabama’s lead to 35-14. Both of Manziel’s interceptions loomed large – the other was thrown in the end zone, nixing an Aggies scoring drive – as Alabama would hold on to win 49-42.
More importantly, in the failed tackle attempt we learned Manziel can’t do everything well. Fortunately, A&M will probably never need him to make a tackle to win football games.