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2019 Texas Bowl: Texas A&M defensive players to watch vs. Oklahoma State

The Aggies defensive lineman will need to step up in Justin Madubuike’s absence.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 12 Alabama at Texas A&M Photo by John Rivera/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Before Oklahoma State and Texas A&M kick off the 2019 Texas Bowl, Cowboys Ride For Free will breakdown the Aggies’ offensive and defensive players to watch against the Cowboys.

Bobby Brown, Jayden Peevy

The Aggies defensive line will look different Friday with Justin Madubuike deciding to sit out in favor of rest and preparation for the 2020 NFL Draft. Brown and Peevy will be two players with the task to step up in Madubuike’s absence to help the Aggies up front. Madubike’s 45 tackles (18 solo) and 5.5 sacks were the most on the Aggies’ d-line. Peevy isn’t too far behind at 32 tackles (12 solo) and two sacks then Brown with 20 tackles (seven solo).

Buddy Johnson

Johnson is the Aggies’ leader on defense. He has a team-high 71 tackles (36 solo), one sack and one pass defended after making the move from outside linebacker to inside. His ability to play either inside or outside will be beneficial to trying to haul down OSU’s speedy running back Chuba Hubbard once the Canadian Cowboy reaches the second level of the Aggies defense.

Charles Oliver

Aggies head coach Jimbo Fisher likes his secondary. Whether it’s players like Demani Richardson, Leon O’Neal Jr. or Keldrick Carper, the Aggies cover well. And from a coverage standpoint, Oliver stands out the most with 14 passes defended, which is 10 more than the next closest defensive back. He’s got size (6-foot-2, 196 pounds) and has seen plenty of action in his final three games with nine passes defended and 13 tackles (nine solo). The Aggies will most likely load up the box to stop Hubbard, which could leave A&M open to big plays through the air.