Alabama's Jaylen Waddle Named SEC Special Teams Player of the Week

Alabama Athletics

Christopher Walsh

Alabama football’s Jaylen Waddle was named the Southeastern Conference’s Special Teams Player of the Week for his performances against Texas A&M, the league office announced on Monday morning. 

The league honor is the first of Waddle’s career.

Per the announcement:

  • Waddle Was instrumental in providing the Crimson Tide with great field position to start drives all afternoon in College Station
  • The sophomore recorded 128 yards on four punt returns, a total that ranked as the third-most in Crimson Tide single-game annals
  • Averaged 32.0 yards per return with a long of 43 against the Aggies
  • Thanks to the standout performance in his return to his home state, Waddle leads the nation in punt return average at 22.3 yards with 12 returns for 267 yards over six games in 2019
  • He is averaging 17.9 yards per return for his career, a total that is currently at the top of Alabama’s career punt return list.

As for the Crimson Tide players of the week from the coaching staff, Landon Dickerson, Najee Harris and Tua Tagovailoa were selected on offense; Terrell Lewis and Xavier McKinney on defense; and Ale Kaho, Patrick Surtain II and Jaylen Waddle on special teams.

OFFENSE

Landon Dickerson

  • Made his second start of the season at center, playing 67 snaps and not allowing a sack, hurry or quarterback pressure
  • Missed only one assignment on the day with the redshirt junior’s efforts helping the Crimson Tide account for 448 yards of total offense, an average of 6.9 yards per play

Najee Harris

  • Carried the ball a career-high 20 times for a season-best 114 yards on the ground
  • The junior averaged 5.7 yards per carry with a long rush of 25 to lead all Alabama runners
  • Added three catches for 19 yards including a touchdown from 16 yards out, his fourth receiving score on the season

Tua Tagovailoa

  • Finished 21-of-34 with 293 yards and four touchdowns through the air
  • Set the career passing touchdowns record at 81 with his four-score performance in College Station, passing the previous record of 77 set by AJ McCarron (2010-13)
  • His 293 yards also moved his career passing yardage total to 6,613 in 30 career games, now in his junior season, to rank third all-time in Alabama annals

DEFENSE

Terrell Lewis

  • Dominated off the edge against the Aggies, posting two sacks (-7 yards) as part of the redshirt junior’s three tackles on the day
  • Added a team-high two official quarterback pressures while being credited with five by the Alabama coaches
  • Helped the Crimson Tide defense record a season-high five sacks (-16 yards)

Xavier McKinney

  • Earned player of the week recognition once again thanks to his six-tackle performance in College Station
  • The junior also contributed a pass breakup while recovering a fumble

SPECIAL TEAMS

Ale Kaho

  • Blocked a punt for the second consecutive game after getting in front of one against Ole Miss
  • The sophomore’s blocked punt sent the ball rolling towards the end zone with the defense picking it up for six, the Tide’s final score of the afternoon

Patrick Surtain II

  • The sophomore played a key role on an Alabama special teams unit that limited A&M to only one kickoff return for a gain of 14 yards

The final selection was Waddle, of course. 

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