No. 13 Alabama was supposed to be provided a sense of comfort on Saturday against South Florida. The game was supposed to bring clarity to the quarterback position after Jalen Milroe, who had started the first two games of the season, was benched by Nick Saban following the 34-24 loss to No. 3 Texas in Week 2. That didn’t happen as the Crimson Tide struggled to a 17-3 win.
Notre Dame transfer Tyler Buchner started the game and went 5-of-14 passing with 34 passing yards before redshirt freshman Ty Simpson took his turn. Problem solved, right? Nope, the problem was exacerbated as Simpson went 5 of 9 for 73 yards. Granted, he helped lead the Crimson Tide to the win, but the fact that it was a one-score game into the final minute against a 34-point underdog is unacceptable.
Now, it’s back to square one after Saban announced Monday that Milroe will return to the starting role after Buchner and Simpson struggled. This was the correct — and potentially only — move the legendary Alabama had in his arsenal.
Where the Tide go from here with Milroe taking the snaps doesn’t necessarily depend on him, rather it has to do with the offensive line. Alabama has given up 12 sacks through three games — 13th in the SEC and 126th in the nation. Five came last weekend against a massively out-manned Bulls team. Five more came against the Longhorns, while Milroe avoided more tallies being added on that total thanks to his athleticism inside and outside the pocket.
The Tide’s offensive line problems aren’t exclusive to this season, either. They finished 13th in the SEC in sacks allowed in 2021 (41) despite the marked improvement in sacks allowed last year (22). The 63 tackles for loss allowed last season were cause for concern heading into the season,…
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Author : Barrett Sallee
Publish date : 2023-09-18 17:32:06
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