It’s one thing to have the best player at a position. It’s another to have the best overall unit.
According to Pro Football Focus‘ Jeff Dooley, three SEC teams hold one of the best position groups in the country.
Tennessee ranked as the nation’s top running backs behind the Vols’ duo of Jalen Hurd and Alvin Kamara. The two backs combined for 1,986 yards and 19 touchdowns last season, and beat out LSU, Stanford and Oklahoma for the top spot.
Despite have the fourth-best passing offense in the SEC last season, Texas A&M was ranked as the nation’s No. 1 group at wide receiver. The Aggies brought in grad transfer quarterback Trevor Knight to pilot the offense, and he will have the opportunity to throw to the dynamic Christian Kirk (1,009 receiving yards, 7 touchdowns in 2015), Josh Reynolds (907 yards, 5 touchdowns), Ricky Seals-Jones (560 yards, 4 touchdowns) and Speedy Noil (226 yards, 2 touchdowns).
Alabama was the runner-up behind Texas A&M at wide receiver, but the Crimson Tide were ranked as the nation’s linebacker unit, per Dooley. The Crimson Tide return outside linebackers Tim Williams and Ryan Anderson, who combined for 16.5 sacks in 2015. Alabama also holds senior linebacker, who collected 73 tackles a year ago.
These are of course preseason rankings, but expectations are high for each position group named.