As the Alabama Crimson Tide practiced in front of the media for the final time before the SEC Championship game, backup nose tackle Brandon Ivory was seen in full pads and standing in line with the rest of his position group, but was not seen taking any reps. It seemed as if Ivory was ready to take his usual reps, but was being held back by the coaching staff for precautionary reasons.
Wednesday’s practice tends to be a Judgment Day of sorts for injured players. The percentage of players that do not play on Saturday after missing Wednesday’s practice is much higher than those who do. That being said, 24 hours can make all the difference in the world with sprained ankles.
Today’s body part of the day
Drum roll, please.
The right shoulder!
The right shoulder of freshman wide receiver Chris Black was in less padding than normal, transferring from a more bulky brace comparable to one that is worn on the elbow, to something that looked more like a specially designed undershirt, like Nike Dri-Fit or something from the Under Armour line. To say Black is making steps in the right direction would be a safe statement, to the point where he looks just as ready to play as other wide receivers like Kevin Norwood or Christion Jones.
Take caution, however, as only the coaches and players have seen Black take contact on that shoulder, which is likely the most important test.
Speaking of right shoulders, cornerback Dee Milliner had a brace on his that resembled the one that Black had ditched for today’s practice. Head coach Nick Saban has not listed Milliner on any de facto injury reports, so this looks like another precautionary measure.
I spotted the general manager for the San Fransisco 49ers, Trent Baalke, at practice today. Since the team is practicing inside, it is more difficult to see what position group exactly he was looking at, but he did appear to spend some time with the offensive linemen than a little more with the linebackers and defensive backs.