Georgia football is easily predicted to make Atlanta in way too early 2022 SEC Rankings

The Georgia Bulldogs celebrate after defeating the Alabama Crimson Tide during the College Football Playoff Championship held at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 10, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
The Georgia Bulldogs celebrate after defeating the Alabama Crimson Tide during the College Football Playoff Championship held at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 10, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images) /
3 of 7
Georgia football
Will Anderson Jr. celebrates a play against the Georgia Bulldogs during the College Football Playoff Championship. (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images) /

Alabama Crimson Tide and Texas A&M sit atop the SEC West division

Alabama Crimson Tide: 12-0 (8-0)

The reigning SEC champions will look to put the national championship loss behind them and contend for the title once again in 2022.

Alabama brings back many key contributors and will likely be a better team overall than in 2021. It’s a tale as old as time and will continue as long as Nick Saban is the head coach.

Heisman-winning quarterback Bryce Young will be back for his junior season and look to build upon the gaudy numbers he posted in 2021.

Young will be throwing to a slew of new targets in 2022 with the departure of Jameson Williams, John Metchie and Slade Bolden for the NFL draft.

His rapport with the younger replacement receivers had not been established as Metchie, and Williams’ injuries proved to hinder the Tide’s offense during the national championship game.

With an entire offseason to get acquainted with, building those relationships will not be an issue in the future. Agiye Hall and Ja’Corey Brooks could be in for tremendous seasons on the receiving end of Young’s passes.

Alabama also poached stud running back Jahmyr Gibbs from the transfer portal, immediately filling the void left with Brian Robinson declaring for the draft.

In two seasons at Georgia Tech, Gibbs averaged 5.2 yards per carry and accounted for over 1,200 scrimmage yards in 2021. He will step right in as an immediate impact player for the Tide and could be one of the top running backs in the country for 2022.

Another big name the Tide added out of the portal is former Georgia wideout, Jermaine Burton. He will fit in nicely with the Tide as Burton is a top-notch player.

Defensively, the Tide will likely compete for the top unit in college football. Saban retains a good majority of the starting team from 2021, including star linebacker Will Anderson, who was arguably one of the most dominant players in the nation this past season.

Other notable returning starters include linebacker Henry To’oto’o and defensive tackle DJ Dale.

Saban has also been active in the transfer portal for defensive players, snatching Eli Ricks from SEC West rival LSU. Ricks is one of the top defensive backs in the country and will fill an immediate need in the Tide’s secondary.

As talented as Alabama’s team projects for 2022, the Tide should return to form and run the table in the regular season, earning them another SEC Championship Game appearance.

Beyond just the SEC, Alabama is a national title favorite along with Georgia. Fans should start planning their travel arrangements for yet another playoff run.

Texas A&M Aggies: 10-2 (6-2)

The Aggies will look to bounce back from a relatively underwhelming 2021 season and battle for the top spot in the SEC West.

Though it’s hard to imagine Alabama losing to the same team in back-to-back seasons, that is what must happen for Texas A&M once again for a chance to win the West.

With the level of recruiting that head coach Jimbo Fisher has been doing, the Aggies will be a force in the West sooner than later. One of the biggest question marks surrounding potential success in College Station is the quarterback position.

Haynes King won the preseason quarterback battle in 2021, but that came to a swift end as he suffered a season-ending injury early in the season’s second game. Zach Calzada would take over the starting duties as a result.

With Calzada’s recent transfer to Auburn, the starting job is up for grabs again.

LSU transfer Max Johnson will compete for the job against King and incoming 5-star freshman Conner Weigman.

Johnson had a solid 35:7 touchdown-to-interception ratio at LSU in 18 total games, but his completion percentage left something to be desired as it hovered right around 60%.

King’s only complete game in 2021 was against Kent State, in which he threw for 292 yards along with two touchdowns and three interceptions. An immediate injury after a shaky start leaves fans wondering whether it will serve as a substantial setback in his development.

Weigman is a talented early-enrollee who played against high-level competition in Texas high school football. The dual-threat brings a lot of talent to the table with his arm and legs.

The quarterback competition will likely be a dominating storyline throughout the offseason for Texas A&M, and the success of the winner will determine the Aggies’ potential as a team.

With young, raw talent on both sides of the ball, there could be growing pains coupled with flashes of what fans can expect to see consistently in future seasons.

The talent level will help lead the Aggies to be a top team in the SEC West, but true contention for the West crown might have to wait another year.