What about the defense?
What about the defense?
15 National Championships
They've got a name for the winners of the world, and i want a name when i lose, They call Alabama the Crimson Tide, call me Deacon Blue.( Steely Dan 1978 )
ROLL TIDE ROLL
My guess on the WR depth:
X: Cooper / White / Shinn
Y: Norwood / Bell / Foster
Z: Ch. Jones / Black / Cy. Jones
Black and Ch. Jones are probably going to be similar to Norwood and Bell this season where they split the snaps pretty evenly (similar to X right before White went down too). Foster is going to get on the field because he's such a great talent as a returner and since his eligibility clock will be ticking I would assume they'll try to get him involved. I think people underrate how well developed and experienced the 5 returning guys with starting experience (Cooper, Norwood, Bell, White, and Ch. Jones) are in this group. Black is going to breakout next year, so that is a pretty solid 6 contributors right off the bat. I think Foster could pass up Shinn but he's going to be fighting for snaps with some great players.
The secondary will be without long-time contributors Dee Milliner and Robert Lester. Still, there is an embarrassment of riches at safety. Jarrick Williams will be healthy next year while HaHa, Perry, and Sunseri all have a great deal of experience. Don't forget about Landon Collins, a former 5-star safety, who has been mostly in special teams this season (remember, Barron followed a similar path after coming in with high expectations). We need a corner to step up in addition to Belue and Geno Smith. Fulton will be a senior and the obvious first choice. I expect Geno will start on the outside in base defense but Fulton will be the 5th DB and Smith will slide into star when in nickel.
All this said, the defense has the potential to be an elite unit. I feel like the LB corp is the strongest we've had position by position since Saban got here and Pagan is due to be a breakout 3-year player if he keeps his development going through the offseason.
I think the defense has the potential to be the strength of the team next year which is saying a lot because the offense has a great deal of potential to be one of the elite in the nation. For as good as our defense looks statistically this year, many - and myself - just don't feel like we have an elite defense because Alabama defenses get compared to units like 2009 and 2011. 2013 has the potential to look more like what we've come to expect. I think even the better offenses are going to struggle to score on us next year unlike this year when the better teams exposed some cracks in the armor.
Last edited by rgw; December 21st, 2012 at 07:48 PM.
Incredible depth at the WR position. I'll be interested to see how OJH impacts the TE depth chart. This could be an explosive offense that nobody will want to deal with.
I guess my concern, or speculative worry, is about our offensive line. Namely, can we maintain our physicality and knock the DL back? I see a lot of promise there...and none of the young'uns are small, either.
Yeah, I imagine Volger will move over to the in-line TE position while Howard will be competing with Harrison Jones at H-Back.
I'm not worried about the OL. Most of the replacements are well-developed within the program or an incoming JUCO transfer.
Last edited by rgw; December 21st, 2012 at 08:00 PM.
Sorry to inundate with posts, but I'd also bet on Jalston Fowler to play H-Back as much as the true H-B types next year. Howard will probably see the field though because we're hurting for a big-body receiver type at TE/H-B. Howard may be a liability as a blocker being a true freshman but perhaps we'll see him used like we attempted do with Smelley in 2008: line him up inside on spread formations as a mismatch.
I mean, the OL will not be as good as this year's line. I thought the 2009 unit did a great job of using the motivation of being the perceived weak link and only paved the way to a Heisman winner. As a positional group, I think our OL takes a lot of pride in what they do and know the standard they're expected to maintain. Arie K kind of got caught up in a logjam after his injury but he's got a lot talent. We didn't just recruit him to land his brother. There's a dropoff from Warmack, to be sure, but he's been around awhile and has the physical ability to succeed. Kelly may be a better natural center than Barrett Jones. The question is right tackle but truly Fluker is the only elite talent we've had their in our recent run of excellence. We've gotten by with some mediocre play at that position to be frank. Shepherd or Leon Brown (JUCO transfer coming in this semester) will likely be the choice at RT. I wasn't too impressed with our OTs in the second unit whereas the interior guys looked rather solid. fwiw, I think Brown ends up starting.
Oh, I agree. The strength of next year's team IMO will be QB, our skill position depth and/or experience, the front seven on D (namely LBs), and special teams should be awfully solid.
I guess coaching, too