Alabama Football: With no Malachi Moore how Bama’s secondary adjusts

Aaron E. Martinez-USA TODAY NETWORK /

It was hoped Monday would bring an Alabama Football injury update. Unfortunately, there was nothing offered on the severity of injuries to Malachi Moore and Crimson Tide punter James Burnip.

On Saturday, Nick Saban said Moore twisted an ankle causing him to leave the Texas A&M game. Nick Kelly of the Tuscaloosa News reported Moore was in a boot and using crutches after the game, but appeared to be putting some weight on the injured ankle.

James Burnip also incurred an injury and as of Monday, there was no new information on Burnip. Burnip has led the SEC in punting this season. Though he shanked his first punt against the Aggies, his next one was good for 63 yards. Alabama is in great shape at punter if Burnip misses more action because of Will Reichard. Against the Aggies, Reichard punted four times and averaged 41.2 yards.

The situation is dramatically different in replacing Malachi Moore. Moore is the secondary’s general, reading opponent offensive packages and directing coverages for teammates. In addition, Moore’s individual performance this season has been the best of his Alabama football career.

Alabama Football Without Malachi Moore

Moore is the Tide’s most versatile defensive back. He plays Star, Money and Safety. Alabama has a more than capable replacement at Star in Terrion Arnold. When Arnold goes to Star, Trey Amos comes in as an outside cornerback. Amos is not at the level of Kool-Aid and Terrion but he is an experienced player with good coverage skills. The result is that in Nickel, Alabama is not as good without Moore, but the dropoff is not staggering.

When Alabama goes to Dime, missing Moore becomes more acute. With Moore out, the Tide’s sixth defensive back becomes Kristian Story. Story is a gifted athlete but in limited action, his performance has been inconsistent. If Devonta Smith was healthy, he would likely come on the field before Story, but Smith has not played this season.

Without Moore, if either Kool-Aid or Trey Amos is injured in a game, Arnold probably stays at Star and an inexperienced backup cornerback would come in. That corner would likely be Earl Little II. The redshirt freshman missed the first half of the 2022 season. In a limited role, he has played in a total of eight Alabama games.

Malachi Moore could make a rapid recovery and play against Arkansas. If not, the Crimson Tide should beat Arkansas without him. It would be a major blow for the Crimson Tide defense if Moore also missed the Tennessee game.

Continued Offensive Improvement Needed. dark. Next

On Monday some player information was gained. The Crimson Tide Players of the Week against Texas A&M were Jalen Milroe, Jermaine Burton and Isaiah Bond on offense; Justin Eboigbe, Tim Keenan III and Chris Braswell on defense, along with Braswell and Will Reichard on special teams.