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Alabama football scrimmage identifies top three candidates at QB

 

 

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Spring_UAScrim002As the first Alabama football scrimmage of 2014 has come and gone, there were several questions surrounding the quarterback, defensive backs and lineman.  The biggest of these of course was who was to replace the three year starter AJ McCarron.  Would the previous backup to McCarron take the step up or would it be someone else stepping up to the challenge.  The coaching staff has kept the pecking order under wraps for the first seven practices leading up to the scrimmage and even now that order may adjust.

Alabama had gotten away from releasing stats during scrimmages where QB competition is concerned.  However, stats following yesterday’s scrimmage were released giving fans a glimpse of how each candidate did.

Senior Blake Sims led the first team offense which was seen prior to the scrimmage consisting of senior Austin Sheppard at left tackle, senior Arie Kouandjio at left guard and center junior Ryan Kelly. On the right side, sophomore Alphonse Taylor was at guard and senior Leon Brown at tackle. This rotation in the line is just one scenario that was seen prior to the scrimmage and though there are several pushing to make the lineup, this one does seem more likely as the first team which averages 314 pounds. The offensive line is obviously still a work in progress and head Coach Nick Saban is aware that some tweaks needed to be made especially with pocket protection.  “We get too much pressure in the pocket, so the quarterbacks can’t operate, which we need to get cleaned up with the offensive line so that the guys have a better chance to function back there,” Saban said.

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On the day Sims went 16 of 23 for 227 yards and two touchdowns which included a 75 yard TD from a 1 yard pass to Amari Cooper.  “Blake has had a really good spring and has taken some command,” Saban said.

According to post scrimmage comments from Saban, red-shirt freshman Cooper Bateman seems to be listed as second on the depth chart at the quarterback position. “Cooper Bateman has made a lot of improvement and done a great job“, Saban said.  Bateman was 14 of 24 for 102 yards.

Spring_UAScrim017Listed third on the Saban’s list following the first scrimmage is sophomore Alec Morris completing 9 of 12 passes for 57 yards.  There were no stats released for redshirt freshman Parker McLeod or true freshman David Cornwell.

On a side note it was noticed that offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin may have found some oversized sweat-pants from DJ Fluker during warm-ups.

Here are the stats that were released on the day.

Rushing

Kenyan Drake: 11-60, TD (7 yards)

Tyren Jones: 10-49

Derrick Henry: 12-40

Altee Tenpenny: 13-40

T.J. Yeldon: 7-20, TD

Receiving

Amari Cooper: 5-190, 2 TDs

Cameron Sims: 2-48

Altee Tenpenny: 3-23

Christion Jones: 3-21

Raheem Falkins: 2-21

Defense

Trey DePriest: 8 tackles

Denzel Devall: 5 tackles, 2 TFLs, sack

Reggie Ragland: 5 tackles, sack, pass break-up

Landon Collins: 4 tackles, TFL, blocked FG

Jarrick Williams: 4 tackles, 2 PBU

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