Final puzzle piece for Kalen DeBoer?

Missouri v Alabama
Missouri v Alabama / Brandon Sumrall/GettyImages

Alabama Football is continuing to pursue a defensive back in the transfer portal. Among others, the Tide recently pursued Florida State transfer Greedy Vance Jr., who ultimately landed at USC.

The latest name to watch is veteran cornerback and former Arizona State Sun Devil Ed Woods. Woods spent four years in Tempe, and was a major contributor for the past two seasons. In 2023, he recorded a career-high 33 tackles, adding an interception and two forced fumbles. In total, he has 66 career tackles with 5.0 tackles for loss and 10 pass breakups. 

Sure, these aren’t eye-popping numbers, but Woods has played a lot of Power-5 snaps in the secondary. Some may argue that the now-defunct PAC-12 does not compare to the SEC, but the league was much improved over its last two years. Additionally, Bama’s only projected starter at cornerback came from the conference in former USC corner Domani Jackson. 

The bottom line is Alabama Football needs experience at this position, and adding a player like Ed Woods would help a great deal.

Woods would still have the challenge of beating out elite freshmen like Zabien Brown, which may have been a contributing factor in Vance’s decision to go elsewhere. Though it’s young, Bama’s cornerback room is far from barren, and I don’t believe this is a “walk in and start” situation for any potential transfer. 

The final piece?

When assessing the Alabama Football roster, it seems as though a veteran corner is the last necessary piece for the Crimson Tide to add. Coach DeBoer could choose to look for another receiver or perhaps an experienced offensive tackle, but these would feel more like luxury additions than needs.

Between the retention job he has done, both on the roster and in the 2024 recruiting class, and the additions he has made, Coach DeBoer has done a great job of assembling a championship-caliber roster. Heading into summer, he is now just filling in the final pieces.