The Alabama Crimson Tide have lost their outstanding offensive line coach to the NFL. Jeff Stoutland has decided to join forces with Chip Kelly to become the offensive line coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.
Stoutland has been steadily coaching since 1984 where he has been all over the college football spectrum. He was named the offensive line coach on January 14, 2011 after Joe Pendry, who was an assistant to head coach Nick Saban, retired after 17 years in the game. Stoutland has spent most of his coaching career as an offensive line coach, which is unusual considering he played linebacker for four years at Southern Connecticut.
There is no question this is a huge loss for the Crimson Tide as Stoutland molded what is most definitely the best offensive line currently in the game, if not the history of college football. Alabama linemen D.J. Fluker, Barrett Jones and Chance Warmack are all considered first-round talent but if nothing else will be for sure selected in the NFL Draft this April. Warmack is considered by many scouts to be the top offensive lineman entering the professional level.
Even though Stoutland will be missed he has already left his mark on the program. He was a big part of helping Saban with the 2013 recruiting class that is ranked No. 1 in the country, which includes the top ranked offensive guard along with two other top linemen.
Stoutland may have no experience coaching in the NFL but that does not mean he isn’t well suited for it. Spending time at Alabama has mentally prepared him for the big task that lies ahead. Philadelphia had what was widely considered one of the worst offensive lines in the league. Quarterback Michael Vick had a hard time staying upright as he was sacked a whopping 48 times and was hit a league-worst 118 times. I am sure Crimson Tide fans can think of no one better to right the ship in the City of Brotherly Love than Stoutland.
As far as replacing the coach, well, that is going to be no easy task. However, considering the school that he is leaving is the most impressive college football program in recent memory, I am sure Saban already has his replacement in mind.