Alabama Team News

Alabama should have no trouble vs. Arkansas State with Ole Miss on deck

Week Two of the college football season is here and after a dominating win over Louisville, the Tide have a breather before beginning SEC West play. Alabama executed above-average against the Cardinals, but Nick Saban still has concerns he’ll address this week.

Where can the Tide improve?

Mental Errors

Saban spoke multiple times about mental errors and penalties after the win against Louisville. The defense alone had six penalties, three of which contributed to a Cardinals scoring drive in the third quarter. Two of the penalties came from the secondary while the Tide had three personal foul/unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in the game.

Call if first game jitters, but the defense, especially seasoned veterans like Anfernee Jennings and Christian Miller, can’t make these kinds of mistakes going forward.

Running back by Committee

As always, Alabama has a handful of running backs who can get the job done. All four of the running backs in the rotation had six-plus carries in the game and it seems to be working out fine.

As the offense progresses throughout the year I still think Damien Harris is going to get the bulk of the carries, especially during crunch time. Josh Jacobs is a multi-position threat while Najee Harris and Brian Robinson Jr. give you added size and speed.

I foresee a heavy rush emphasis on Saturday as the Tide should test Arkansas State’s rush defense early and often.

Secondary Issues

Blown calls, penalties, and a breakdown of communication lead to success for Louisville in the passing game last Saturday. The Cardinals found yardage in the middle of the field at will throughout the game and picked at the open wound of the defense multiple times throughout the night.

While Deionte Thompson and Shyheim Carter did have interceptions on the night, the front half of the defense only managed three quarterback hurries. As I said earlier this year, pressuring the quarterback will take heat off of the secondary allowing it to grow instead of being forced to grow.

Arkansas State quarterback Justice Hansen had over 400 yards passing and six touchdowns in the Red Wolves opening game against Southwest Missouri State so this could be an opportunity for Alabama’s young secondary to be tested once again.

Offensive Line Woes

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