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Jalen Milroe Seems To Be Winning The Quarterback Battle At Alabama

The Alabama Crimson Tide aim for a better season in 2023, after narrowly missing the College Football Playoff in 2022. Bryce Young became the first Alabama quarterback to go first overall in the history of the common-era NFL draft this past spring.


In light of that, there are questions surrounding the position this year. There are three guys with immense talent battling for the starting spot: redshirt sophomore Jalen Milroe, redshirt freshman Ty Simpson, and transfer redshirt sophomore Tyler Buchner.



Jalen Milroe

Milroe appears to be leading the pack, as he gets the majority of first-team reps. He saw some critical game time for the Crimson Tide when Young went down last season. His elite speed and ability to escape the pocket were brilliant. He didn't showcase an innate ability to find open guys, but the receiving corps last year was considered weak.


Ty Simpson

Simpson was a highly touted recruit, as he was the fourth highest-rated quarterback in his class. He built a solid frame during his first year and has shown flashes of improvement. Turnovers have been a concern for Simpson, preventing him from maintaining consistency throughout camp.

Tyler Buchner

Buchner transferred in from Notre Dame, following his offensive coordinator Tommy Rees to Tuscaloosa. He's a tremendous athlete, but hasn't made a name for himself to this point. He still sits third on the depth chart and is expected to stay there for at least the foreseeable future.

Consistency Is Key

Head coach Nick Saban made it clear after their first scrimmage earlier this month, that they are looking for consistency at quarterback. The guy who can limit turnovers and run the offense as it's meant to be run will ultimately win the job.


“I’m not a stats guy, so we're not interested in what their statistics were," said Saban. "We are going to be interested when we watch the film. And how did they execute? Did they throw the ball in the right place at the right time? Were they accurate in what they did? Did they take care of the ball so that we have a chance to play winning football at that position? And that's what we'll be evaluating.”


Saban was able to nitpick just about every position in his press conference following the first-team scrimmage. He cares far more about execution and small details than what the stats show. Rees has worked hard to coach a new system and spoke about returners Milroe and Simpson.




"I think they both improved greatly from the spring," said Rees. "You know, I think there's been an extra buy-in, you know since spring ball landed and just doing more, doing extra to get themselves prepared."


Given that Rees isn't bringing his own offense into Tuscaloosa, it seems to benefit the returners rather than Buchner who played under Rees for the last two seasons. Milroe and Simpson will continue to battle it out, but if Milroe can find strong consistency, the job seems to be his to lose. Of course, it's subject to change at a moment's notice.

 

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