Alabama Players to Watch
QB, Jalen Hurts
Traditional Saban-coached teams have relied on a more composed game-managing quarterback that stood tall in the pocket and threw the ball well down field. While that might have been the game plan in summer practice, Jalen Hurts has taken the job and run with it – literally.
Hurts has carried the ball 74 times for 428 yards (5.78 yards per carry). The Aggie defense will have to respect the run pass option and try to contain the most mobile quarterback they’ve faced this year.
DB, Minkah Fitzpatrick
Aggie nemesis Minkah Fitzpatrick leads the Alabama team with three interceptions this year including a 100 yard pick six against Arkansas (above). Sumlin hasn’t forgotten what Fitztpatrick did to his offense last year, intercepting quarterback Kyle Allen twice and returning both picks for scores. Trevor Knight is going to have to be careful where he throws the football.
LB, Rueben Foster
The team’s leading tackler in 2016, Foster has proven himself to be one of the most consistent pieces for Saban’s impressive defensive front.
While Sumlin and Mazzone spend their time game planning ways to keep Knight safe from the likes of Jonathan Allen and Ryan Anderson they’d best not forget one of the most senior members of the Crimson Tide defense. It’s not often players stick around for three years at Alabama, but when they do they usually have something left to prove.