Alabama Football: In-depth Draft review for eleven Tide juniors

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Alabama football

COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA – SEPTEMBER 14: Henry Ruggs III. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Rumors swirl about eleven Alabama football juniors and the 2020 NFL Draft. An in-depth look at Draft possibilities and probabilities for a Tide return.

I’m going to take you back to the beginning of this season. A time when Alabama football was getting ready to dominate Duke. Everyone was healthy and the Tide was poised to have one of the greatest seasons in college football history.

There were talks about whether Tide players would be breaking draft records come April 2020. Tanking for Tua was getting underway in the NFL and Tua was undoubtedly going to be the #1 overall pick in the 2020 Draft.

Snap back to today and everything has changed. Tua was injured twice and is rehabbing for at least the next six months. Joe Burrow came seemingly out of nowhere to take over as the top QB in this draft class. Debates about Tua’s health will rage in NFL front offices through draft night. The recent decision of Andrew Luck to retire after an injury-plagued, short career complicates the matter even more.

Teams are more wary than ever of guys they deem “injury-prone”. Tua, no longer a sure-fire No. 1 pick, is being moved all over draft boards, anywhere from 4th overall to being out of the 1st round altogether.

The uncertainty surrounding his draft status has given him some pause. A pause which has permeated the Alabama locker room. Recent reports centered on Tuscaloosa indicate things may not play out the way everyone thought they would. Here is a timeline of what we know has happened since Alabama’s season ended:

  • Thursday 12/5/19 – Tua holds a press conference thought to be a draft announcement, but instead discusses his thought process regarding his draft decision.
  • Week of SEC Championship – Tua reportedly calls for a players only meeting with select draft-eligible Juniors attending.
  • Saturday 12/7/19 – ESPN airs a Kirk Herbstreit interview with Tua in which he indicates he is leaning toward returning to Alabama for his Senior season.
  • Sunday 12/8/19 – Playoff committee releases final rankings moving Alabama down to 13th.
  • Monday 12/9/19 – Reports surface that many of Alabama’s draft-eligible Juniors are contemplating returning for one more season.

It seems like a combination of the players only meeting and perceived disrespect by the committee and the media left some Alabama football players with feelings of unfinished business. Now that the dust has settled we are starting to get glimpses of who might leave for the NFL and who might come back.

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