After Alabama’s scrimmage on Saturday, head coach Nick Saban praised Alabama’s quarterback play. He was not the only one.
Alabama defensive back Hootie Jones did not pull any punches when it came to the defense’s performance in Saturday’s scrimmage. He said the QBs had their number.
“The quarterbacks were very good to see, very competitive and putting their guys in great positions,” Jones said. “I mean, honestly, the defense really got tore up by the quarterbacks.”
Saban said the defensive backs did not have enough respect for the deep part of the field. Returning starter Jalen Hurts took advantage, passing for four touchdowns. The two backup quarterbacks, Tua Tagovailoa and Mac Jones, also had good performances according to multiple players and Saban.
The offense’s ability to stretch the field surprised Jones and the secondary. He said the defense thought the offense would play it safe.
“We didn’t think they was going to probably pass it that much, but when we did think they were going to pass it, we (thought) it was gonna be short passes,” he said. “And that was killing the defense.Honestly, I can’t sugar coat it.”
The team did not provide official stats, but Saban said multiple Alabama receivers had big days as a product. Calvin Ridley had eight catches, T.J. Simmons had seven catches and Robert Foster had three.
The passing game seemed to be lights out.
“The receivers played real good and the quarterbacks was putting them in good position, putting the ball on the money,” Jones said. “There wasn’t like nothing we could do, for real. We was already playing lazy and they was tearing us up. ”
Alabama’s secondary is one of the strengths of defense heading into 2017. The team returns multiple starters and contributors last year. When it comes to recovering from the last scrimmage, Jones says it’s an easy fix.
“We just have to play faster, for real,” Jones said. “We were playing very lazy out there and not respecting our keys that we’ve been told to respect at all times, we just weren’t doing it.”
Jones was quick to put the blame on the defensive players and not the coaching staff. He said the team came out flat. Other player’s in the secondary believe it was a good learning experience.
Alabama just has two weeks to prepare for the team’s A-Day game on April 22. Cornerback Anthony Averett believes the improved passing game will help the defensive backs in the future.
“It helps us because we want to defend all the deep balls, so it helps us know what we need to work on,” Averett said.
Source:: The Crimson White Sports