Alabama Football: How Tide’s defense got better this offseason


Alabama football somehow got better on defense. Here’s how.

Alabama football saw two defenders drafted in the first two rounds of the 2021 NFL Draft, and another key starter is now on an NFL roster. Now, the best defense in the SEC is without one starter at each level of the defense.

Still, Alabama will have an even better defense in 2021. Losing the best corner in college football and an elite linebacker like Dylan Moses will be tough, but the group as a whole will improve. Here’s how.

It’s not about the three starters Alabama football is losing. It’s about the eight they return. Alabama retains both outside linebackers, including one of the best young defenders in the country in Will Anderson. Christian Harris will compete for the Butkus award, and Alabama’s secondary has plenty of players worth being on the field. With a younger secondary last year, they now have a great group with experience at every position.

The one move that changed everything was when Henry To’o To’o decided to transfer to Alabama. With experience in a similar system, he should be able to play as soon as the SEC allows transfers within the conference.

Pairing To’o To’o with Christian Harris will give Alabama the greatest linebacker duo since Reuben Foster was on the roster in 2016. Adding in Jaylen Moody will give the Tide depth at a key position. They’ve lacked depth over the past few seasons, so having three players who can start would be vital.

Alabama had a young defense that overachieved last year. With the return of Malachi Moore, Will Anderson and DeMarcco Hellams, expect an improved defense this season.

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If you told Alabama football fans last year that you would be better despite losing Patrick Surtain, Christian Barmore and Dylan Moses, they would’ve called you crazy. Still, Alabama’s defense will be even better in the upcoming season.