The champion Alabama Football team are sending a slew of players to the NFL
On Thursday, Alabama Football standout quarterback Mac Jones, a finalist for the Heisman Trophy, declared that he will enter the 2021 NFL Draft. Along with his announcement, teammates Jaylen Waddle, Patrick Surtain II and Christian Barmore will follow their quarterback to the pros. In addition, starting linebacker Dylan Moses announced he will also enter the draft. The collective of Crimson Tide players forces Alabama to reload at each of their positions, but also beefs up an already strong draft class.
Mac Jones is considered a potential first round pick after leading his team to a championship. He set his school record for 4,500 passing yards and completed a stunning 77.4% of his passes. In what is a very strong quarterback group this year, Jones may struggle to find a way into the top, but he could be a solid consolation prize for QB-needy teams in the latter half of Day 1.
His teammates offer equally or more impressive ability, each with the potential to be the first drafted at their respective positions. Surtain could be the first defensive back drafted in late April, boasting an impressive blend of size, instincts and smooth technique. Included in his stacked resume are 37 straight starts, basically every game he suited up for Alabama. NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah considers him one of the better corners in the draft:
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"There’s a lot to love about Surtain’s game. The three things that stand out to me are his size, instincts and ball skills. That’s a great foundation to start with when you’re trying to build an upper-echelon NFL cornerback. As I mentioned earlier, I believe he can play in any scheme, but the Seattle coaching tree is going to be really excited about him! He would fit in beautifully with that system since he can play man and Cover 3 all day long. His length and physicality are exactly what they are looking for at the position."
Waddle, who fractured his ankle earlier in the season but somehow returned to action in the National Championship game, also has the potential to be the first of his position group to be drafted. Christian Barmore, who had a monster championship game himself, could also lead his particular position come draft day. Moses may not be the first linebacker selected, but he presents equally enticing skills at a loaded position.
Each player provides an injection of intrigue to the 2021 NFL Draft process, and have a chance to really capitalize off of not only fantastic careers in the SEC, but an impressive blowout victory to become the top team in the nation. Keep an eye on Jones, Surtain, Waddle, Barmore and Moses heading into April.