Alabama-Tennessee 3Q update

Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Alabama might be without its most dominant defensive player, but the Crimson Tide have still been dominant.

Nose tackle Terrence Cody is back home watching on television and will be out for at least the next game, too, with a sprained MCL in his right knee.

Like a championship-caliber defense, though, Alabama hasn't missed a beat and has shut down everything Tennessee has tried to do in building a 16-3 lead after three quarters Saturday night at Neyland Stadium.

The Vols' defense held in there pretty well in the first half, but Alabama's offensive line played much better in the third quarter.

The Tide's touchdown drive at the end of the quarter lasted 12 plays and covered 79 yards. For the first time all night, Tennessee's defense looked tired.

As suffocating as Alabama's defense has been, Tennessee's offense has been wretched. Even when the Vols looked like they might be about to put something together, they'd kill a drive with a penalty.

There are some bad offenses in the SEC this season. Auburn ranks up there along with Mississippi State and Vanderbilt. But none of them are as helpless as Tennessee.