The Alabama Football gave us a look into the future in the Rose Bowl and we may have a new feature back in 2024. With the Alabama Football team trailing in the Rose Bowl Nick Saban plugged in Justice Haynes to give the team a spark in the ground game. The result was Haynes getting four carries rushing for 31 yards and 7.8 yards per carry. Justice Haynes was the most explosive back we've seen all season breaking two runs for 10+ yards giving Alabama Football the burst it needed it in the second half. Haynes was asked about his increased role, and he said the following:
"I come into every game just expecting to play, prepare like I'm going to play, like I'm RB1. When my name is called I'll be ready."- Justice Haynes
The Alabama Offense was seemingly having the most success it had all night with Haynes running the football, and it's unclear why they didn't go back to him in the fourth quarter when the team was trying to put the game on ice after Michigan missed a field goal.
Both Jase McClellan and Roydell Williams have decisions to make about their futures as both can enter the NFL Draft now that the season is over. If both leave, it will likely be a split backfield between Jam Miller and Haynes. However, if one or both return the backfield gets pretty crowded. Haynes showed in the Rose Bowl how talented he is and it would be a waste to use him sparingly again in 2024. He was by far the most explosive and the quickest of all the backs we've seen the Alabama Football team play this season.
After the game Justice Haynes said the following about the future:
"I think our future is very bright. We're all going to work, and we're going to use it as fuel. We're going to remember this, and we'll be back."- Justice Haynes
The next week or so will provide us with a clearer outlook on what the 2024 Alabama Football team will look like. The transfer window for Alabama Football was extended with the team making the College Football Playoff so we will get a massive chunk of the transfer news this week. NFL Draft decisions will also come this week, as Dallas Turner has already declared for the Draft immediately following the Rose Bowl.
The 2024 Alabama Football team has a chance to be special offensively. Starting at Quarterback the team will return a Heisman Candidate in Jalen Milroe, who will only get better with a full offseason as the starter with with offensive coordinator Tommy Rees also coming back.
The Running Back room will be loaded with talent with Justice Haynes and Jam Miller likely being the lead duo while young running backs in Richard Young and Kevin Riley will compete for playing time. The Receiver room will bring back Isaiah Bond, Kobe Prentice, Jalen Hale, Kendrick Law, and other young skilled receivers while adding talent like Ryan Williams, Amari Jefferson, and Rico Scott. The Tight end room has a chance to be really special as they should return Amari Niblack, Robbie Ouzts, and CJ Dippre while adding the uber-talented Caleb Odom to the mix.
The biggest question for the 2024 Alabama Football team is along the offensive line. The unit struggled at times this season and will likely lose JC Latham to the NFL Draft and Senior Seth McLaughlin. We've seen the Alabama Football team bring in a transfer in offensive lineman Naquil Betrand and they may look to add another piece or two.
Alabama Football: Justice Haynes has to be the lead back in 2024
In my opinion, Justice Haynes has to be the lead back for the Alabama Football team in 2024 if the team wishes to do big things. Haynes showed how explosive he can be and that was without being utilized in the passing game where he could get one-on-one matchups in space and create explosive plays for the offense. The team was running at will with Haynes in the game and going away from him in the fourth quarter was a massive mistake by Tommy Rees. A running back duo of Haynes and Jam Miller will provide this team with a lethal duo in both the rushing and receiving games leading to more nightmares for opposing defenses.