Alabama Football: Pre-A Day Offensive depth chart

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 08: Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts to a play during the first quarter against the Georgia Bulldogs in the CFP National Championship presented by AT
ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 08: Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide reacts to a play during the first quarter against the Georgia Bulldogs in the CFP National Championship presented by AT /

Check out the latest changes in our projected Alabama football offensive depth chart leading up to the A-Day game.

Several weeks ago, we responded to the ongoing interest of Alabama football fans with two ‘Never Too Early’ depth charts: ‘Never Too Early’ Offense and ‘Never Too Early’ Defense.

After 12 spring sessions and an additional 2018 player signee, we have updated the depth charts heading into the A-Day game. Are they still too early to be of value? Our position is more information is of more value than less information.

2018 Quarterback and  Running backs

Starter: Jalen Hurts

Backup: Mac Jones

Tua Tagovailoa reinjured his hand with a second blow to a helmet before the last scrimmage. It is not official but he should not play in the A-Day game. There is no point in risking further injury.

Without Tua in the A-Day game, Mac Jones has a showcase opportunity.

Running Back

Starter: Damien Harris

Running back is a rotation position for Alabama football. Four players will be in the 2018 rotation: Damien Harris, Najee Harris; Josh Jacobs and Brian Robinson. Najee Harris will come close to matching Damien’s touches. Josh Jacobs and Brian Robinson will share what remains in the running back distribution. In our opinion, Jacobs and Robinson are good enough to be starters at several SEC  schools. Najee Harris is a 2018 or 2019 superstar for Alabama football.

Receivers and Tight Ends

The wide receivers, tight ends and h-backs are also rotational positions for Alabama football. Six wideouts will play frequently even without any injuries. Two to four guys will handle the tight end and h-back roles in regular sets. Occasionally a  big body can also be used to catch passes as Da’Ron Payne did in the national championship game.

The starting wides are expected to be 2017’s impressive freshmen, Henry Ruggs III, Devonta Smith and Jerry Jeudy. Tyrell Shavers, Chadarius Townsend plus seniors Xavian Marks and Derek Kief will have a chance to earn meaningful snaps.

The 2018 freshman wide receivers can also earn playing time. Slade Bolden, Xavier Williams and Jaylen Waddle can all see the field in 2018. Waddle is so highly regarded he has a chance to settle in at slot receiver and be one of the top four pass receiving targets in 2018.

The tight end rotation will start with Hale Hentges and Irv Smith Jr. Miller Forristall and Major Tennison will also get regular snaps. Kedrick James has impressed this spring. Once thought to be a potential move to the defensive line, James has a bright future at tight end.

The Offensive Line

In 2018, the big question is who replaces Brad Bozeman at center. The most likely choices are Ross Piersbacher and Brandon Kennedy.

Piersbacher is a smart player who handles his assignments without being a physically dominating player. He is the most probable choice for a 2018 starting center. The other possibility at center is Brandon Kennedy. Kennedy is a redshirt junior, who missed most of his sophomore season with a broken leg.


2017 starters, Piersbacher and Lester Cotton are probable return starters. Unless Ross moves to center. If he does, Leatherwood, Wills and also Matt Womack can play guard. Womack struggled some with pass protection in 2017. Moving him inside could better utilize his run blocking talent.


If picking a short-list of the most physical Alabama football offensive linemen, Alex Leatherwood and Jedrick Wills would make the list. As far as dominating opponents for a ‘road-grader’ Crimson Tide rushing machine, the top five would be Williams, Womack, Leatherwood, Wills and Cotton.

It is possible someone else could fight their way up the spring and fall depth chart. Richie Petitbon, Scott Lashley and Chris Owens will certainly compete for playing time.

The offensive side of the ball does not have as many question marks as the defense. Most Alabama football fans believe Tua will assume the starting QB role, though when is not known. Look for Nick Saban to choose a two-QB system in 2018.

Next: How much do we know after two spring scrimmages?

Alabama football will practice on Tuesday and Thursday this week. The A-Day game is scheduled for 1 PM on Saturday.