Alabama Football: Top 30 NFL Draft prospects of the Nick Saban Era

(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /
8 of 10
Alabama football
(Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images) /

Alabama football’s top 30 NFL Draft prospects: 9-7

9. Mark Barron, Safety

Mark Barron has been really versatile during his NFL career, which has prolonged it. He was drafted incredibly high for a safety, but he ended up inevitably switching to outside linebacker. Once he gained a significant amount of weight, he became a pass rusher who was good enough to step out in coverage. He is on the tail-end of his career, so it is safe to say that he did not fully live up to his ceiling. However, he has been in the NFL for a long time, which is worth mentioning.

8. Minkah Fitzpatrick, Safety

Minkah’s best trait for Alabama football was his versatility. He played cornerback, slot corner, and safety at Alabama. He can also play in the box if absolutely necessary. This versatility bumped up his NFL Draft stock, but it also made the team that drafted him crucial. Miami was not a great fit for Minkah, although his jersey did look clean. Miami was asking Fitzpatrick to do too many things. This kept him from really being successful with the Dolphins. He was then traded to the Steelers for a first-round pick, proving that his value was still there.

7. Andre Smith, Tackle

Andre Smith was the first player drafted of the Nick Saban era. He was also one of the highest-rated high school prospects in Alabama football history. He was never the best offensive tackle in the NFL, but he had an extended professional career. For most NFL players, that is a win. You can’t expect every player to be a Hall-of-Famer.