The Crimson Tide does not rebuild; they just reload. It is no different in 2021 as they look to have one of if not the best roster in college football, coming off of a national championship win. Nick Saban not only recruits top players but also finds a way to get them onto the field and develop in his system. Alabama’s positional coaches are the best to allow the Tide to roll on and produce stellar NFL prospects year after year.
LaBryan Ray, Defensive End
When on the field, Ray is a dominant force up and down the Alabama defensive line, using his athleticism, length and power to wreak havoc. In the run game, he is smart, processing quickly and controlling gaps to limit rushing output. As a pass rusher, he beats tackles with his violence but is even more dangerous when reducing inside. The length and athleticism that he possesses are simply too much to handle for interior linemen. Repeated lower-body injuries have derailed season after season for the former five-star recruit. If he can stay healthy and his medicals check out, Ray will be a very high draft pick.
John Metchie III, Wide Receiver
Stepping in for the injured Jaylen Waddle, Metchie had an outstanding season en route to winning his first national championship with the Tide. He is a three-level separator with foot speed and ankle flexion, allowing him to change directions at high speeds. The Canadian is a very sudden route runner, keeping his head and pads square before snapping off. Downfield, Metchie tracks the ball and has excellent hands to haul it inconsistently. Alabama’s presumed primary target will have to show that he can handle the load with DeVonta Smith out of the picture in 2021.
Evan Neal, Offensive Tackle
The enormous offensive lineman stepped into the starting position at left guard as a true freshman before making his way over to right tackle in 2020. Neal has rare physical traits, being a special athlete at his size. His length and strength can overwhelm opponents in the run game or in pass protection. Overaggressiveness and a tendency to waist bend cause inconsistencies in his game that is the only thing in the way of Neal being a top 15 draft pick.
Justin Eboigbe, Defensive End
A true junior in 2021, Eboigbe is a tall and long defensive end. He understands how to utilize that length, playing at extension consistently. At the point of attack, he shows pop behind his pads to reset the line of scrimmage and force ball carriers to cut it back. Flashes of quick and decisive hands need to become the norm as he should see even more playing time this fall. Eboigbe’s issues with inconsistent pad level and a slow get-off are very fixable and, if they are fixed, should propel him firmly into first-round consideration.
Christian Harris, Linebacker
Few schools pump out linebackers like the Crimson Tide and Harris is the next in line of highly drafted Alabama backers. With the makings of a modern-day NFL linebacker, he can run, cover and blitz. Harris has the physical traits and leadership qualities that are required of second-level defenders. With more playing time, he needs to become more instinctual and be a more reliable tackler in space. Harris has all the tools required to be exceptional in the future.