Tyler Bray had the least prolific passing day of his career as a starter last Saturday, throwing for only 148 yards against Mississippi State. He might be in for more of the same against Alabama's defense. AJ McCarron hasn't thrown an interception in his last 227 attempts, so even one pick would be a huge victory for Tennessee's defense. Edge: Alabama.
Tennessee didn't seem to miss a beat last week when Rajion Neal and Marlin Lane went down with injuries. Neal is unlikely to play today, but Lane should be back. Alabama just keeps replacing five-star backs with other five-star backs. Even injuries don't seem to slow them down. Edge: Alabama.
Wide receivers/tight ends
We'll find out today whether Tennessee's talented receiver duo of Justin Hunter and Cordarrelle Patterson can make a dent in Alabama's vaunted defense. UT coaches will look for ways to get both players involved, even in nontraditional ways. Edge: Tennessee.
Tennessee's line has played extremely well in each of the last two games, pushing the Vols' running game to new heights and keeping Bray safe. Alabama's offensive line is perhaps the best in the country and is stocked with future NFL players. Edge: Alabama.
Alabama's rushing defense is best in the country, and much of the credit goes to the defensive front. Senior nose guard Jesse Williams, a mammoth Australian, anchors the line. Edge: Alabama.
Tennessee's Curt Maggitt is now fighting a shoulder stinger in addition to turf toe, meaning his injury prognosis is likely to remain a concern throughout the season. Alabama always seems to have an elite group of linebackers under Nick Saban. C.J. Mosley leads this year's unit. Edge: Alabama.
Tennessee's secondary didn't surrender any big plays last week, which was only a small victory for a game in which the Vols allowed 41 points. Alabama has 11 interceptions while opponents have only thrown for two touchdowns. Edge: Alabama.
Michael Palardy is now handling kickoffs, field goals and punts, a situation that hardly seems ideal, but is the best option for the Vols right now. Patterson's 98-yard kickoff return last week — combined with Alabama's momentary breakdown in the kicking game against Missouri — gives Tennessee a glimmer of hope. Edge: Even.
Tennessee's staff has an Alabama flavor with the addition of defensive coordinator Sal Sunseri and cornerbacks coach Derrick Ansley. But success comes much easier at places like Alabama, where there are future NFL players at every position. Edge: Alabama.
Tennessee will have a home-field advantage of course, but there's some concern about just how much crimson will be sprinkled in among the orange. Alabama has SEC and national title aspirations on the line, while Tennessee is hoping for its first league win. Edge: Alabama.
Alabama 37, Tennessee 20.
It's hard to envision an upset, but some team will eventually puncture Alabama's air of invincibility. Could it be Tennessee? With no mistakes and a little bit of luck, anything's possible. Scoring 20 against this defense would be a victory in itself.
Evan Woodbery covers Tennessee football. Follow him at www.Twitter.com/TennesseeBeat.