Alabama Football: What could the 2023 QB room look like?

Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports
Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports /

As the Alabama football program prepares to part ways with a generational talent in quarterback Bryce Young, the future of the position is shrouded in mystery. Unlike when Young took the reins from Mac Jones two seasons ago, there is not a clear succession plan in place at the moment.

Alabama Football QB Room: The returnees

The current backup quarterback is redshirt freshman Jalen Milroe. Milroe is a game-changing athlete, but lacks the polish as a passer that is necessary to be a high-level SEC quarterback. He was a 4-star recruit in the class of 2021, and was rated as the 13th best quarterback in the country in that cycle.

Jalen Milroe got meaningful snaps this season due to Bryce Young’s shoulder injury, flashing both immense potential and glaring weaknesses. In his Alabama career, Milroe has thrown for 338 yards and six touchdowns, adding 320 yards and another score on the ground. He has only thrown three career interceptions, but each was particularly bad. In his only start earlier this season, Milroe was highly scrutinized after turning the ball over three times in a single half.

Much of the fan base is high on true freshman Ty Simpson. Simpson saw limited reps this season as the third-string quarterback, but has a high ceiling as a former 5-star in the class of 2022. Ty Simpson has more passing upside than Milroe and possesses impressive mobility in his own right. He will be entering his second year in the program, and could possibly make a big enough leap in his development to take the starting job.

Alabama Football QB Room: New additions & portal speculation

Alabama football also brings in two highly touted freshmen in its 2023 recruiting class. Eli Holstein and Dylan Lonergan are both 4-star prospects and considered to be top-10 quarterbacks nationally.

Holstein is considered the 8th best quarterback in the country, while Lonergan isn’t far behind at no. 10. It is unlikely that either will legitimately compete for the starting job next fall, but both have promising long-term potential.

Given that there is no proven player returning at the quarterback position, a large percentage of the Alabama fan base would like to see the Crimson Tide comb the NCAA transfer portal for an established option.

Perhaps the most popular name is North Carolina’s Drake Maye, who has been one of the best quarterbacks in the country as a redshirt freshman. Although he was at one time committed to Alabama, convincing Maye to bring his talents to Tuscaloosa seems like wishful thinking.

Drake Maye is a legacy at the University of North Carolina. His father Mark played quarterback for the Tar Heels, his older brother Luke is a UNC basketball legend, and his younger brother Beau is currently on the North Carolina basketball team. Most importantly, Drake himself is already having incredible success in Chapel Hill, and will likely be firmly entrenched there for one more year before turning pro.

Other potential QB transfer targets have been floated as well, but none go beyond blind guesses at this point. Personally, I have complete confidence in the four quarterbacks Alabama football will already have on the roster in 2023.

Next. Bama lands 2023 WR Jaren Hamilton. dark

Ty Simpson is very talented, and fans may have given up on Jalen Milroe too early after one bad game. It is true that Milroe needs work, and we have not seen enough of Simpson to truly know where he stands, but I think either one could eventually be a national championship-winning quarterback with proper development and a quality surrounding cast.