Alabama Football: After ’20 season Tide offense could be feast to famine

Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports
Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports /

Two things are true about the Alabama football offense. This season it’s loaded and next year it will need a massive rebuild.

Alabama football fans love the Crimson Tide’s 2020 season and rightfully so. There are many reasons why and some of those reasons are shown in the stats listed below.

The 2018 and 2019 season, Alabama football offenses are considered the Tide’s most productive ever. Check out how the 2020 offense compares in three Crimson Tide team records.

Most Alabama Football Yards-Per-Game

  • 2018 – 522 yards
  • 2019 – 510.8 yards
  • 2020 – 561 yards

Most Alabama Football Passing Yards-Per-Game

  • 2018 – 323.6 yards
  • 2019 – 342.2 yards
  • 2020 – 393 yards

Most Alabama Football Points-Per-Game

  • 2018 – 47.2 points
  • 2019 – 47.2 points
  • 2020 – 48.5 points

All stats from

In the end, an all-SEC game schedule, with no FCS or non-Power Five opponents, might diminish the Tide’s 2020 numbers. If that schedule change has little final impact, the 2020 Alabama Crimson Tide offense is tracking to finish No. 1 in the three categories.

Going into the season, with the exit of Tua Tagovailoa and doubts about Mac Jones, few Crimson Tide fans envisioned the ’20 offense setting new records.

There are two reasons the 2020 offense has been so productive. One is the offensive system designed by Steve Sarkisian. His play-calling has been equal to the excellence of his schemes.

As well as Sark has performed, there is another, bigger reason for the Tide’s success. It is returning starting experience on offense. Eight offensive starters (Landon Dickerson, Alex Leatherwood, Deonte Brown, Evan Neal, Miller Forristall, Najee Harris, Jaylen Waddle and Devonta Smith) returned from last season. Two more 2020 starters, Mac Jones (with four starts) and John Metchie gained valuable playing experience last season.

With returning experience being so important in college football, the 2020 Crimson Tide offense was poised to be excellent. It has not disappointed.

The situation will be reversed in 2021 unless a more than expected number of players decide to take advantage of an additional season. The only 2020, offensive starters sure to return are Emil Ekiyor, John Metchie and Evan Neal. Perhaps Brian Robinson, Mac Jones and Miller Forristall will return. Even if the trio delay going pro, the 2021 Crimson Tide offense will have only six returning starters.

Many Alabama football fans are confident Bryce Young would make up (and maybe more) for a Mac Jones exit. Replacing Waddle and Smith with equally explosive players will be a challenge. The greatest rebuild will be an offensive line, returning only one starter. Further complicating player development is a season with fewer opportunities for backups to play.

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Also in 2021 is the strong possibility Steve Sarkisian will take advantage of an opportunity to be a head coach again. A new OC, with so much offensive turnover, could make 2021 a vert different season.