Alabama Football Running Backs: A-
Running back could be a major strength for Bama in 2023. Fans and media alike, as well as Coach Saban himself, are excited to watch talented freshman Justice Haynes tote the rock for the Crimson Tide this fall.
Haynes was a 5-star recruit from the state of Georgia, and looks to be a complete back that plays with a low center of gravity and excellent contact balance. He is equally adept running between the tackles and on the perimeter, and is also a threat as a pass-catcher. Haynes scored three touchdowns on A-Day, and should be in the end zone a lot throughout the 2023 season.
If Justice Haynes represents the ceiling of the Alabama running back room, seniors Jase McClellan and Roydell Williams give the unit a very high floor.
McClellan and Williams are very experienced backs that came to Alabama as 4-star recruits in the class of 2020. The duo got backup reps as freshmen on Alabama’s 2020 national championship team, and both suffered season-ending knee injuries as sophomores in 2021.
Last season, both were healthy and played major roles in the Alabama offense. Jase McClellan split snaps with Jahmyr Gibbs, contributing 829 total yards and 10 touchdowns. Roydell Williams mostly played in short-yardage situations, rushing for 250 yards and four scores. This is an underrated duo that helps to ensure that Bama won’t have any depth issues at running back this season.
True sophomore Jam Miller is not one to be overlooked either. He saw spot minutes as a freshman last season and flashed enormous potential. Miller was getting most of the hype in the running back room before Haynes got to campus, and he could very well play his way into the rotation this fall.
Alabama Football Receivers: B+
Alabama’s receiving corps is elite on paper, but this group has to prove its value on the field this fall. Drops and overall inconsistent play have plagued the unit going back to the 2021 postseason when it cost Bama a championship, and continued to be a problem in this year’s spring game.
Senior Jermaine Burton and junior Ja’Corey Brooks are returning starters, and this is the year for them to put it all together if they want to be NFL receivers. Burton in particular has been critiqued for his drop problems, but he can be a big play waiting to happen when he is locked in.
JUCO product Malik Benson could be the WR1 the Tide was missing last season, and will make life easier on whoever wins the QB job.
Rising sophomores Isaiah Bond, Kobe Prentice, and Kendrick Law all cut their teeth as true freshmen in 2022, and will contribute even more this year.
At the tight end position, Maryland transfer CJ Dippre and redshirt freshman Danny Lewis Jr. look to be the two most complete players in the room. New offensive coordinator Tommy Rees is known for utilizing his tight ends, so this could be an important position group for the Tide this season.
Behind Dippre and Lewis Jr., junior Robbie Ouzts is a very physical blocker that can play H-Back in power formations. Sophomore Amari Niblack is an athletic pass catcher that can flex out wide and generate mismatches.