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The Jumbo Package | 09.18.13

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide news and notes.

Well, that's not very sportsmanlike...
Well, that's not very sportsmanlike...
Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

Young players in Alabama secondary to see increased opportunities, veterans' jobs not 'guaranteed' |

"We've got some younger players that deserve an opportunity to play and we're going to look at them in practice," Saban said. "We're going to give some guys an opportunity to play. I'm very encouraged by some of these young guys that we have."

Of Alabama's four freshman defensive backs, only one, Maurice Smith, has seen the field through the first two games. Eddie Jackson was seen working with the Crimson Tide's upper-tier defensive backs throughout portions of preseason camp. Jonathan Cook and Anthony Averett have mostly worked with the scout team.

Young guys getting a shot?  Whatever could have precipitated this drastic turn of events?  In all seriousness, we have a number of guys that are elite talents that need to be able to step up for us in the coming weeks.  Time will tell if they can.

A bright spot in Alabama's secondary, Jarrick Williams seizes opportunity to start at 'Star' |

Williams was Alabama's second-team option at the "Star" defensive back spot in the Crimson Tide's nickel and dime defenses entering the final week of preseason camp. When the player in front of him, Geno Smith, was arrested for driving under the influence and suspended for the first game of the season, Williams was elevated by default.

Williams has yet to be demoted because he's rebounded from a season lost to a torn ACL and played the position so well during Alabama's first two games of 2013.

A "bright spot" indeed (though I doubt you'll hear Geno Smith call it that).  Williams has performed well in this role, but I think we would still tend to prefer to have a corner that can cover in that role.  Don't be surprised if Geno reclaims his position shortly.

Saban impressionist Rob Ezell returns as Colorado State grad assistant with future in coaching |

The walk-on receiver's Nick Saban parody made him an internet sensation after ESPN's behind the scenes special aired in 2010. The Athens product saw limited action before moving onto his next career.

Ezell spent the 2011 season as a volunteer assistant at Alabama before moving on to Colorado State with his former offensive coordinator, Jim McElwain. Now in his second season as a graduate assistant with the Rams, Ezell will return to Alabama with his new team at 6 p.m. Saturday.

It takes a special talent to make a name for yourself as a scout team receiver.  Also, Ezell's impression has held up well over the last few years.

Carolina Panthers sign Robert Lester from practice squad |

Former Foley High football star Robert Lester has been elevated from the Carolina Panthers' practice squad to the NFL team's active roster. The Panthers signed the safety, a former Alabama standout, after their secondary was beset by injuries in a 24-23 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

Practice Report:

Couple updates on injured guys from yesterday's practice - wide receiver Kevin Norwood and cornerback Deion Belue were both on exercise bikes.  Kellen Williams was taking first team snaps in place of right guard Anthony Steen (who suffered a concussion in the A&M game).


Jalston Fowler

Defensive Linemen

Jarrick Williams