Alabama Football: Development in Early Stages of Season Key for Late Season Success
Saturday afternoon the University of Alabama football team will take the field against their second Sun Belt Conference team of the year in the Florida Atlantic Owls, allowing another chance to develop as a team.
Alabama, although dominant in their first three games of the year, have plenty of room to improve as the season continues. While it is easy to lose focus for fans and players, these early season games play a huge role for the successes or failures down the road. After all, you can’t build a house without a solid foundation.
Alabama is building that foundation. However there are still areas where the Crimson Tide could improve.
1. Pass rush
Nick Saban always preaches “affecting” the quarterback which is something the Crimson Tide does a great job of. At the same time Xzavier Dickson and Adrian Hubbard have plenty of room to grow at this stage of the season. If they continue to grow week after week, they could be absolute terrors on opposing offenses.
2. Backup quarterback
If there is anything that has been learned this season, it is that a backup quarterback is an important insurance policy to have. Phillip Ely and Blake Sims have battled it out in practice and during 3rd and 4th quarters when McCarron is pulled from the game, but neither have pulled away just yet. If either Ely or Sims can develop, it will certainly give everyone a little more peace of mind should the unthinkable happens or if McCarron leaves early.
Alabama’s secondary was burned for two deep touchdowns against the University of Michigan, but has since remained steady and solid. The Crimson Tide made a big adjustment moving Nick Perry into the rotation at free safety. It also hasn’t hurt that Alabama has been able to get the likes of Geno Smith and Landon Collins some playing time. Both could be contributors by the end of the year.