Alabama Football: To accomplish more Tua must take a step back

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Tua Tagovailoa may be the most gifted quarterback ever for Alabama football. To achieve more, he needs to take a step back.

Earlier in the summer, Alabama football quarterback, Tua Tagovailoa was asked to comment on success in his Crimson Tide career. It was a fair question for a young man who led one of the greatest comebacks in National Championship history. Then Tua followed that with nearly 4,000 yards passing, plus passing or running for 48 touchdowns. His passing yards and 43 touchdown passes are both Crimson Tide single-season records.

Tua’s response to the question was not rude, but it made clear to him none of the past matters going into the new season. His attitude was at this point, his accomplishments meant nothing.

There was a small chorus in the off-season claiming Tua needed to humble himself. Anyone voicing that opinion fails to understand the young man and his family. And another thing, if picking a model for QB success, discard humility and put an exceedingly smart assassin under center.

Cast aside all angst over Tua and depend on Nick Saban and Steve Sarkisian to make Tua play smarter. Based on fall camp comments from Tua, the messages from his coaches is being absorbed.

Tua said Monday,

"I’m just taking what the defense gives me now. If they are going to give me the first read, I’m not going to pass it up."

Simple words but they show a mind willing to step back, (on and off the field) and evaluate how best to win. Given his immense talent and perhaps the most momentous TD throw in National Championship history, a formerly less mature Tua cannot be faulted for trying to pull off too many great plays in every game.

Failure is a great maturity building tool. Clemson provided it in January and Tua actually sounds grateful for his learning process that followed. Also on Monday, he parroted Nick Saban by saying “you never go broke taking a profit.”

The swashbuckler Tua will be constrained. He will throw some balls away. He will accept check-downs as small wins. Given adequate protection, he will work through his progressions. And when the time is right he will take the homerun shot.

Why wouldn’t he? As he explained Monday, defenses cannot cover all of the Tide’s four fast wide receivers in man defense. If an opponent tries, Tua said,

"If they play man against these guys, we gotta go out and torch the defense."

Tua’s own words should thrill every Alabama football fan and frighten any opponent.

"Just always having that little whisper in the back of my head, gotta keep pushing, gotta keep fighting, and then just take what they give me and just play a play at a time."

We call that taking a step back – one that can lead to a big leap forward.

Next. Nick Saban's QBs Rated. dark

As wonderfully fiery as Nick Saban can be on a practice field or sideline, sometimes balance is needed. Calm is an important trait in a QB coach and a play-caller. Steve Sarkisian has that attribute and it will benefit Tua.