Alabama Football: Offense shows growth in home victory

Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports
Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports /
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Alabama Football
Gary Cosby Jr.-USA TODAY Sports /

Alabama Football Offensive Line: C

I thought the offensive line play was fairly solid in this game. It did a much better job in pass protection, as opposed to last week’s abysmal showing down in Tampa. The box score will show four sacks, but most of those were the product of Jalen Milroe getting happy feet and leaving the pocket in the first half.

The offensive line also found its rhythm on the ground, pushing the Ole Miss defense around in the second half.

The unit grades out at a C because it took too long to establish the run for the second straight week. After gaining 57 yards on its first six carries in the first half, Alabama started going backwards.

For the remainder of the first half, the Tide’s 16 carries went for -22 yards, including sacks. Even when adjusting for sack yardage, Bama netted just seven yards on 12 running plays (0.6 YPC) during this stretch.

With a passing attack that largely depends on the ability to run the ball first, the Alabama offense simply can’t function when it runs the ball this poorly. If it continues to wait until the second half to be able to run effectively, Alabama Football is going to find itself in dog fights for the rest of the season.

Additionally, the center-quarterback exchange problems continued, as Seth McLaughlin sent a shotgun snap flying over Milroe’s head to foil an easy scoring opportunity. Any time a drive starts on the opponent’s 1-yard line, it simply has to result in a touchdown. Instead, Bama had to send Will Reichard out for a long field goal.

McLaughlin has yet to go a full game this season without a near-disastrous snap. Clearly, Bama doesn’t have another option that it trusts at the center position, so once again I will say that McLaughlin has to clean it up.