We conclude our look at statistical benchmarks in the SEC by checking in on the last line of defense. The secondary gets its turn today, as we see how many guys can snatch at least five interceptions this fall.
Last year, the SEC saw only two players record at least five interceptions. Surprise, surprise, Alabama's Minkah Fitzpatrick led the SEC with six interceptions, while Missouri's Aarion Penton was second with five interceptions. Fitzpatrick is back, Penton is not.
The SEC had at least three players reach five interceptions in the previous three seasons. So how many will hit five interceptions this season? With more passing expected to take place this fall in the SEC, I'll go with four.
Here are the guys with the best chance of getting to the five-interception mark this fall:
1. S/CB Minkah Fitzpatrick, Alabama: This couldn't be any more obvious. Fitzpatrick snagged six interceptions last year and there's no reason why he won't see the field as well as he has in the past. Fitzpatrick is projected as one of the top overall players in next year's NFL draft, and he could be at his best in his third year with the Crimson Tide.
2. S Dominick Sanders, Georgia: Sanders has 12 interceptions in three years. Last year, he had just three picks, but he collected six in 2015. Sanders is the ultimate ball hawk and is an absolute pain for quarterbacks to play against. Sanders covers way too much of the field not to have a chance at ending his Georgia career with five more interceptions.
3. CB Anthony Averett, Alabama: Averett kind of came out of nowhere last year, but was one of Alabama's best defenders at times, despite having zero interceptions on the season. He's exceptional in coverage and knows how to keep his head on a swivel in order to see even more of the field.
4. CB Carlton Davis, Auburn: He also didn't record an interception last year, but he's so good one-on-one. Quarterbacks stopped throwing his way last year, but as this secondary gets better in 2017, quarterbacks will have no choice but to test him.
5. CB Donte Jackson, LSU: He's expected to take over the No. 1 corner spot for the Tigers this fall. Jackson tied for first on the team with two interceptions, but he'll probably have more action coming his way this fall. Jackson can make great plays on the ball and should make an even bigger name for himself.
6. CB Duke Dawson, Florida: Dawson is an extremely athletic and versatile freak on the field. After owning the nickelback position, Dawson has moved outside to the boundary. He only intercepted one pass last year, but he broke up six other passes. Dawson excelled outside this spring and has the ability to move all over if needed.
7. S Ronnie Harrison, Alabama: One of the best safeties in the country, Harrison came away with two interceptions last year. He has great ball skills and with Fitzpatrick alongside him, don't expect many quarterbacks to try and test these guys too often. Still, Harrison has such great eyes and instincts that he can make plays from just about everywhere.
8. S Mike Edwards, Kentucky: One of the league's most versatile players, Edwards can play in the box or step back and be a grazing safety. He had three interceptions last year and with all the of the spots his coaches can put him, Edwards has a shot to be even more of a threat to quarterbacks this fall.
9. CB Ken Webster, Ole Miss: This all hangs on his health. If he can return to full health after suffering a gruesome knee injury in last year's opening loss to Florida State, he'll be the Rebels' top defensive back in 2017. He was Ole Miss' best corner heading into last season, and if he gets back on the field this fall, we could all see why.
10. LB Skai Moore, South Carolina: Teammate Jamarcus King almost made this list after grabbing three interceptions last year. But that'd be too easy. He's a cornerback, so he should collect interceptions. Moore is a linebacker and he's already had a heck of a time getting interceptions in his career. Before a neck injury cost him his entire 2016 season, Moore recorded 11 career interceptions.