Alabama Football: Some Speculation on the 2023 Roster

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

Draft-Eligible Probable Returnees for Alabama Football

Alabama fans should expect to welcome back some key pieces on offense. Junior running backs Jase McClellan and Roydell Williams are seasoned players that will enter their fourth year in the program, and should make a formidable backfield duo.

McClellan is a complete back who brings speed, physicality, and pass-catching ability to the table. He was able to remain healthy throughout this season as the clear-cut no. 2 guy, and moved into a feature back role when Jahmyr Gibbs was injured. He has totaled 777 yards from scrimmage and nine touchdowns this season, and has 15 touchdowns in his Alabama career.

Roydell Williams brings a physical edge to the running back room. He was used primarily in short-yardage situations this season, but he is capable of contributing more. Williams has 676 total yards and seven touchdowns in his career.

Junior wide receiver Jermaine Burton will also likely return to Alabama. The Georgia transfer came on strong towards the end of the season, setting career-highs with 37 receptions, 590 yards, and six touchdowns.

On the offensive line, junior center Seth McLaughlin and junior guard Javion Cohen should return to stabilize the interior of the line. McLaughlin should have a firm grasp on the starting center spot with the assumed departure of senior Darrian Dalcourt. When McLaughlin is in the lineup, the offensive line as a whole seems to be more aggressive and physical, particularly in the run game. Cohen is a multi-year starter that can establish himself as an early-round draft selection with a strong senior season.

Junior defensive back Malachi Moore should return as well. Should Brian Branch officially declare for the draft, Moore’s role in the secondary will instantly and drastically increase. Moore flashed enormous potential as a freshman in 2020, recording 44 tackles and three interceptions. He has since battled injuries and fallen behind Branch in the rotation, and has yet to match his freshman year production in the two most recent seasons.