Alabama was going to have to overcome some pretty significant injuries on both sides of the ball to win the national championship on Monday night. Unfortunately for the Crimson Tide, some of their backups thrust into major roles struggled down the stretch.
One of them—cornerback Khyree Jackson—faced a lot of scorn from Alabama fans after two rough plays on Georgia's go-ahead touchdown drive. Jackson took to Twitter to respond early Tuesday morning.
Cornerbacks Josh Jobe and Jalyn Armour-Davis were out for Nick Saban's defense with toe and hip injuries respectively. Jackson and Kool-Aid McKinstry stepped in for the Tide in their absence, and late in the game, Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett IV managed to take advantage of the situation.
Bennett picked on Jackson in particular on two huge plays during Georgia's go-ahead touchdown drive. On one play, Jackson effectively tackled Jermaine Burton, who had him beat badly on a double move. Jackson was flagged for a 15-yard pass interference, though he probably saved a touchdown in the process.
Three plays later, Bennett went deep for Adonai Mitchell, who made an incredible 40-yard touchdown grab over Jackson to put the Dawgs up 19–18.
After another touchdown pass for Bennett and a game-sealing pick six by Kelee Ringo, Georgia locked up its first title in 41 years with a 33–18 win.
Between the cornerback injuries and the absences at wide receiver, Alabama had its back against the wall on the injury front. The team lost one 1,000 yard receiver, John Metchie, to a torn ACL in the SEC title game win over Georgia. Jameson Williams, the team's leading receiver, went down in the first half on Monday night and did not return.
“It's a cumulative effect of all the injuries we had,” Saban told ESPN's Holly Rowe after Alabama's loss, per CBS Sports. “We've had a lot of guys that were critical parts of this team that didn't participate in this game.”
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