Saban addressed the media Saturday afternoon following the conclusion of the Tide's second spring scrimmage. Despite what one might have been predicted given the statistical slant favoring the offense, the defensive mastermind was more complimentary of the offense than negative towards the defense. Saban specifically mentioned the positive play by AJ, the offensive line, the receivers and the running game (bestest offesne evarr, y'all).
Saban also seemed to reinforce that some of the defensive shortfallings could be attributed to the absence of some experienced personnel (Xzavier Dickson was out with a bruised knee, and Trey DePriest is out with a broken foot) and the resulting presence of some relatively green personnel. These mitigating factors were clearly enough to cause Saban to be a bit forgiving of the defense's performance. Despite the measure of understanding afforded the defense, Saban did specifically mention that tackling and being more assignment sound were areas that needed improvement.
Special teams were generally good today.
- Regarding how plays were allocated to the QBs this scrimmage: AJ, Blake, Bateman, Morris were the four QBs that got the lion's share of the reps.
- Regarding the cornerbacks: obviously, too many big plays were allowed. Overall prognosis: the players are improving, but they all need to continue to improve.
- Regarding Fowler's participation in the scrimmages: Fowler and Dee Hart do participate in the scrimmages, but they generally do not run the ball. If they do run, two hand touch rules apply.
- Regarding the trip to Washington D.C.: The team will be visiting the Smithsonian this time around. It seems the team is running out of sites to see since they go nearly every year. #DynastyProblems
- Regarding Xzavier Dickson: As mentioned above, he was held out of the scrimmage as he had a bruised knee. He's been playing OLB in base and DE in nickel.
- Most importantly, there were no new injuries to report. Let's stay healthy, fellas.
I'll update this post with an embedded copy of the press conference as soon as it gets posted. In the meantime, here's a link to the video: LINK