The Alabama Crimson Tide are coming off of a bye last week as they prepare for their top-10 matchup with the LSU Tigers this Saturday.
Normally associated with rest, recovery, and extra time to prepare, a bye this late in the season is usually no cause for concern.
However, while speaking to the media Thursday, Nick Saban said that his team's week off leading up to the LSU game isn't automatically a "good thing" and that he's anxious to see how his players respond.
"People always assume a bye week is a good thing, but you never know if it's a good thing or a bad thing until you go through it, see what you get done, see how you improve, see how your players respond. ... That's what we're anxious to see this weekend," said Saban Thursday, according to Charlie Potter.
It's difficult to tell exactly what Saban meant in his comments about Alabama's bye week.
On one hand, the team could be fired up and ready to make a statement against No.10 LSU, putting the Tide firmly back into the College Football Playoff conversation.
Another possibility is that Alabama might have some added nerves coming into the road matchup this weekend. Yesterday, Fox Sports' Joel Klatt pointed out that the Crimson Tide have struggled away from Tuscaloosa this season, giving up on average 25 more points per game when on the road.
In either case, the huge clash this weekend between Alabama and LSU will have a massive impact on both the SEC and College Football Playoff rankings.