Monday, April 20, 2015

[Belated] Sunday Hangover: A-Day Game

Another A-Day game came and went. 

This was an interesting one because with notable starters out (Cyrus Jones) or in non-contact jerseys (Kenyan Drake), a number of younger players had opportunities to show why they were so highly regarded by recruiting services. 

Once again the big question was who was going to win the starting quarterback spot. Web-based rumblings prior to the game noted that redshirt freshman David Cornwell had been working with the first team during spring practices. However, he was the starter on the Crimson team that showcased the second-team offensive line and other assorted backups.

Jacob Coker had a much better day than Cornwell, but he had the luxury of piloting the first-team offense. Even though Coker had a very good day sans a stupid interception, Cornwell is still very much in the mix. 

After losing Cooper to the draft, White and Jones to graduation, and Cam Sims to an injury, wide receivers who had been riding the pine needed to step up. And they did. Robert Foster (six catches for 125 yards) and ArDarius Stewart (eight catches, 118 yards, two touchdowns) were co-mvps of the game. 

While O.J. Howard didn't have a catch, after the game Coach Saban mentioned that he had a really good spring. In other TE matters, Ty Flournoy-Smith (five catches) and Dakota Ball (three catches) had good days. 

Henry had a decent day running the ball, but Drake was visibly frustrated because he was in a non-contact jersey and easy to "tackle." With Tyren Jones kicked off the team, it's a mystery as to who will be the third-string running back. 

With Eddie Jackson currently working at one of the safeties (and he got burned a couple of times), Bradley Sylve and Tony Brown started at the cornerback spots, and Marlon Humphrey had a really good day. There is a ton of pressure on the play of the secondary this year because of the final two games last season. For the most part, Cyrus Jones usually shut down his side of the field last season, but Jackson had a rough go in a number of games. 

Reuben Foster had some pleasantly violent hits on Saturday. Reggie Ragland was solid as usual. And Keith Holcombe did well at LB too. 

In all, from this fan's perspective, I think we have answers at the wide receiver position, and I think our offensive line will be decent. Our front seven on defense will be one of the best in the country this year. The question marks are with two areas: quarterback (Coker or Cornwell?) and the defensive backfield. 

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