On Saturday, the Crimson Tide provided coach Nick Saban with his best chance yet to evaluate his team in a game-like situation when the team scrimmaged on Saturday for the first time since the beginning of fall camp.
“If I was to give an overall assessment, I’d say the first teams executed fairly well, and then I think that after that we have a lot of guys that really need to work hard,” Saban said. “We’re a work in progress. We’re going to watch this film and see a lot of things that we need to improve on.”
Saban said that he wasn’t able to watch the offensive line closely enough during the scrimmage to give a proper evaluation of the line’s performance without watching film, but said he has seen good things from freshman Jonah Williams during fall camp. Williams has consistently been seen at the first team right tackle position all of camp during media viewing periods. Saban said both Bradley Bozeman and Alphonse Taylor spent time at the right guard position.
“We’ve also looked at other combinations of players in these various positions,” Saban said. “So I’m pleased with the progress, not satisfied but certainly think that it’s a better, more healthy, more depth situation than we had a year ago.”
On the defensive side of the ball, Saban is looking for depth. He mentioned Jonathan Allen, Dalvin Tomlinson, and Da’Shawn Hand as players he feels good about, but mentioned some of the other players like Dakota Ball, Josh Frazier, and O.J. Smith could be factors on the defense.
“There are guys making improvements,” Saban said. “I think that is an area where we really, really need to get some of these young guys to improve.”
Despite the ongoing quarterback battle, Saban still wants to see more from the running game. He said the team needs to run the ball with more consistency than what he saw in the scrimmage, but that he has also seen encouraging things.
“The young guys, I think, all did a pretty decent job. I think that we’re very encouraged by what they’ve been able to do daily in practice, and I feel like those guys can certainly be contributors for us,” Saban said. “We just gotta keep working those guys, and I think they’re all gonna make a contribution to the team this year.”
Mostly, Saban is looking for the less experienced members of the team to develop and step up this season.
“We’ve got to get the younger players and the backup players to play with a lot more consistency so they can develop a role on this team so that we have more guys that can go in there and contribute and play winning football,” Saban said. “Right now, we probably don’t have enough guys that fit into that category, but we certainly feel like we’ve got some guys that are capable.
Dalvin Tomlinson twisted his ankle during the scrimmage and will likely be out for a few days.Da’Shawn Hand did not participate in the scrimmage.Saban said Bo Scarbrough was “dinged up” and did not get as many reps as the other running backs.Saban referenced unnamed players having sustained “little, small, light concussions”.
Source:: The Crimson White Sports