Alabama Football: 2022 NFL Draft talk will be wrong

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Alabama football fans will not enjoy some of the commentary leading up to and after the 2022 NFL Draft. Sure, there will be real cause for celebration as seven or more former Alabama Crimson Tide players are selected by NFL teams. But what some national NFL Draft pundits and many fans of opposing programs will claim is the Crimson Tide’s NFL Draft clout has slipped – considerably.

The erroneous claim will be a spin that from six, first-round picks in the 2021 NFL Draft, the Crimson Tide will probably have just two in 2022. The 2021 Crimson Tide, first-round bounty should not be the benchmark for any team. Until it is surpassed, it is the ceiling of first-round Draft success. Only the Miami Hurricanes, in the 2004 NFL Draft have matched the Tide’s total of six first-rounders.

Going back to the 2010 NFL Draft (excluding 2021), the Crimson Tide has a range of first-round picks from lows of one in 2015 and 2016, to highs of four in 2011, 2012, 2017, 2018, and 2020. Most current Mock Drafts have two former Crimson Tide players being chosen in the 2022 first round. There is a chance Christian Harris will join Evan Neal and Jameson Williams in the first round.

More Nick Saban and Crimson Tide Draft Details

Though 2023 Mock Drafts will undergo thousands of future changes, as many as six current Alabama Crimson Tide players have been projected as 2023 first-round selections. A quick survey of several on the 2023 Mocks (including this one sample) shows Bryce Young and Will Anderson Jr. consistently being top five picks. Both of the Tide stars are picked by some as the No. 1 pick in the ’23 Draft.

So when the NFL Draft ‘gurus’ start spouting that Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide have slipped from being the No. 1 Draft factory in college football – mute them, block them, or just simply ignore them. The false claims are the byproduct of national fatigue and in some cases hate for Alabama Football.

Instead, consider some interesting Alabama Crimson Tide, NFL Draft facts. They show two things. One is the extraordinary impact Nick Saban has had on the Alabama program. The other clearly indicates claims of slippage are bogus.

Alabama Football NFL First Round Results by decade

  • 1940s – Three first-round selections
  • 1950s – Two first-rounders
  • 1960s – Four
  • 1970s – Seven
  • 1980s – Seven
  • 1990s – Seven
  • 2000s – Two
  • 2010s – Twenty-eight
  • 2020s – Currently 10, with that count growing to 12 or 13 in just three Drafts

The recent history (including at least two 2023 first-round picks) shows the Crimsom Tide is on pace to match the NFL Draft success of the 2010s decade.

Next. 2022 NFL Mock Draft 1.0. dark

While this post concerns only first-round selections, many more former Crimson Tide players drafted in later rounds have prospered in the NFL.