How does Alabama Football replace each first round draft pick?

2024 NFL Draft - Round 1
2024 NFL Draft - Round 1 / Gregory Shamus/GettyImages

The Alabama Crimson Tide had three representatives in the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft, with cornerback Kool-Aid McKinstry appearing to slip to the second round. Still, legendary Coach Nick Saban’s final draft class is very strong and should do well in the NFL.

Going forward under new coach Kalen DeBoer, how will Alabama Football replace this trio of first rounders? It certainly won’t be easy.

OT JC Latham - 8th overall pick (Tennessee Titans)

With JC Latham heading to the league, Alabama will have a hole to fill at tackle. The return of Kadyn Proctor on the blind side softens the blow, but Bama will be unproven at right tackle.  

Redshirt sophomore Elijah Pritchett and redshirt freshman Wilkin Formby look to be the leading candidates, while redshirt freshmen Miles McVay, Olaus Alinen, and Naquil Betrand could also contend. It remains to be seen if the Tide will look for an experienced tackle in the portal, but solidifying this position should be a top priority for the coaching staff.

OLB Dallas Turner - 17th overall pick (Minnesota Vikings)

Dallas Turner departs as expected, along with fellow NFL talent Chris Braswell. The pair made up one of the most effective pass rushing tandems in the SEC, and Alabama will be challenged with replacing their 18 sacks worth of production this fall. 

Bama has a lot of talent at its Wolf position, which should generate a lot of pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Redshirt senior Quandarrius Robinson has waited his turn and showed flashes last year, but he will be pushed by a slew of challengers. Redshirt junior Keanu Koht was impressive all spring, and redshirt freshmen Yhonzae Pierre and Qua Russaw are high-upside athletes who could figure it out as soon as this year.  

CB Terrion Arnold - 24th overall pick (Detroit Lions)

Cornerback is probably the biggest question mark on the 2024 Alabama roster with Terrion Arnold and Kool-Aid McKinstry heading to the league. USC transfer Domani Jackson is the only experienced player in the room, which also includes redshirt freshman Jahlil Hurley and a quartet of impressive true freshmen in Zabien Brown, Jaylen Mbakwe, Zay Mincey, and Dre Kirkpatrick Jr.

Bama will continue to search the portal for a veteran defensive back, having recently turned its attention to Arizona State product Ed Woods. 

It won’t be easy for Alabama to replace Nick Saban’s final class of first round picks. However, if it can find quality options at the positions in question, it is likely a national title contender.