11 August 2008
- No injuries. Making it through a scrimmage without any significant injuries is a major deal.
- Baron Huber was back in his white jersey after missing a couple of days with a slight concussion.
- Freshman Brad Smelley was in a black jersey, but his injury is not thought to be serious. As impressive as he has looked, I still think he is headed for a redshirt, based solely on the depth in front of him.
- As expected, there were some movements on the "depth chart", as some players began to get more of a look in the playing rotation.
- The most surprising is probably Eryk Anders who worked ahead of Chavis Williams at the SAM linebacker. Anders hasn't produced a ton in his Bama career, though he did look good on A-Day. This looks like it will shape up to be a huge battle between these two guys and Jerrell Harris as camp continues. I expect Williams be back up top quickly.
- Julio Jones got more work with the 1s on offense. He is still rotating with Earl Alexander at one of the outside receiver spots (Mike McCoy has the other locked down), but Julio's ascension to the rotation, and possibly the starting lineup may have already happened.
- A big shakeup for the Tide's 2nd unit offensive line. What had been (left to right) Scott Deaton, David Ross, Evan Cardwell, William Vlachos & Taylor Pharr has changed to - Tyler Love, John Michael Boswell, Brian Motley, Barrett Jones & Taylor Pharr. I was not expecting the 3 true freshmen to jump into the 2-deep this quickly, especially not at the expense of Vlachos. Motley is also making huge strides. My guess is that this truly is an organizational thing, with the Tide coaches wanting to take a look at this unit, and it would not surprise me in the slightest to see it change back as early as this evening. Regardless, it looks like there is finally real competition between a number of very talented guys for roles on the offensive line, and that is a sight for sore eyes.
- The WILL linebacker really looks to be settling in to a 2-man rotation with Cory Reamer & Don'ta Hightower. I feel bad for Charlie Higgenbotham as he has had a great fall camp after a very solid spring, but he is simply behind bigger, faster guys at both inside linebacker positions (Rolando McClain at the MIKE). He'll likely still get some playing time, probably at the MIKE.
- There is a fierce battle going on at the JACK linebacker, which is what I had desperately hoped for. It looks as though there is a 3-man competition right between Brandon Fanney, Alex Watkins & freshman Courtney Upshaw. Fanney still has the edge, mostly due to size and experience, but all 3 guys are pushing each other.
- The 2 true freshman cornerbacks - Alonzo Lawrence & Robby Green - have begun to slide their way up the depth chart, possibly moving ahead of Marquis Johnson & Chris Rogers. Lawrence was expected to do this, but Green is a bit of a shock.
- Mark Barron continues to look headed for playing time. He hasn't passed Justin Woodall yet, but he is the front runner to take the field in Bama's nickel package, and is right on Woodall's heels for safety playing time.
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