The Alabama Crimson Tide Jumbo Package | 04.03.13

Freshman tight end O.J. Howard catches a pass at Bama's first practice after spring break. - Vasha Hunt

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide and Sports related links and quotes

Many Alabama teammates get a seal of approval from playmaker C.J. Mosley

On how impressive elite freshman running back Derrick Henry has been: "He hasn't disappointed yet. When Saturday comes, it's going to hit the fan, so we'll see."

This is a cool article, because CJ gives a brief recap of a ton of players. Unsurprisingly, a lot of the commentary is canned, "coach speech" type answers, but there is still some insight to be drawn. For instance, when asked about 5th year senior Tana Patrick, he said "He’s doing well. He’s still getting in the playbook, learning what he has to do." To be fair, he goes on to say that Tana has improved in knowing his role and making calls, but it seems a bit worrisome to hear that a guy at his stage may not have the playbook down. Then again, we do have one more spot to open up...

AJ McCarron happy to have an old friend on Nick Saban's staff at Alabama

"He's one of my best friends," McCarron said after Monday's practice. "He was my offensive coordinator in high school, left heading into my senior year and we were real close so it was hard for him to leave. So it's kind of cool to have him back for my senior year here.

It's at once funny and a bit unnerving to see the army of coaches Bama is amassing. While it is strictly legal at this point, and it certainly could lend us a strategic advantage in the recruiting wars, I can't shake the feeling that this small army could pose some problems down the road. While I have full faith and confidence that Saban knows the letter of the rules and would not risk playing them fast and loose, I'm curious what the line actually is for "on the field" coaches, and at what point the involvement of these "off the field" coaches becomes an issue from a rules standpoint.

Alabama's young tight ends seeking consistency in competition to replace departed veterans

"We've got to have a guy who can block and be a (pass receiver) at the same time," quarterback AJ McCarron said. "We've got a bunch of guys rotating in at that position. We've got to keep progressing and having them bond with the O-line and bond with the rest of the passing game - learn timing and routes and stuff like that."

The battle for the tight end positions (apparently called "Y" (on the line) and "H" (H-back)) looks to be an interesting one. Everyone knows O.J. Howard coming into the season, but the Tide has racked up a number of quality TE's in the past few recruiting cycles, including four-star players Vogler/Faciane, and three-star players Freitag/Harrison Jones.

Below is some footage from Monday's practice. The biggest thing that jumps out at me is Trey Depriest (#33) is HUGE.

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