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Jumbo Package: Best Player of the Saban Era?

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Lots of great options here, but Michael Casagrande of AL.com tabbed Derrick Henry. What say you?

NCAA Football: CFP National Championship-Alabama vs Clemson Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Monday, everyone. We trust that you all spent yesterday honoring the mothers in your lives. Hootie Jones and Cam Robinson certainly did:

Carr's cancer had been in remission for four years until returning in October 2014 when Jones was a freshman at Alabama.

She has Stage 4 Lymphoma that continues to get worse. Carr has been hospitalized at least three times this year, as recently as a three-day visit that started May 2 because of stomach issues. Doctors continue to tell Carr, as they have since the cancer came back in 2014, "Something could happen at any time."

"It's really just hard to think about," Jones said.

There is a four minute video interview with Hootie and Jessica at the link as well. Ms. Carr seems to be extraordinarily strong, inspiring others with her positive mindset in the face of a terminal diagnosis. Being away from her has to be gut-wrenching for him.

On a happier note, Cam Robinson’s mother got a nice gift thanks to that NFL money:

Good stuff.

As expected, ESPN will be kicking off the GameDay season in Atlanta:

ESPN analyst and personality Lee Corso confirmed the location Friday during an interview with The Opening Kickoff on WNSP-FM 105.5 in Mobile, Alabama.

"We're going to Alabama-Florida State," he said. "It's going to be that one because it is two excellent football teams. We're going to be starting the season going to a tremendous football game.

It’s certainly an exciting start to the college football season.

Unfortunately, construction on the fancy new Mercedes-Benz Stadium has been somewhat “exciting” as well. It was originally slated to open for a soccer match of all things on July 30, but they ran into some delays with the “one of a kind” retractable roof:

It is now scheduled to open on August 26, a whole week before the Alabama game.

They swear that they are now on schedule, but have also delayed demolition of the Georgia Dome just in case something “unforeseen and catastrophic” happens. Worth watching for sure.

They may not yet have a roof, but they do have a 43-foot tall statue in place that was shipped all the way from Hungary:

Interesting that it is a 73,000 lb. bird since that is about the number of birds they’ll receive from fans attending the game if they fail to open that stadium in time.

Just picking the best players from Nick Saban's Alabama decade at certain positional groups proved difficult. Now, the overall best of the best? It's a question you could take in multiple directions based on how things are being graded.

But if we're serious about this, it has to be the player that you just couldn't remove from a given roster. His ability to single-handedly change a game would have to be a touch above the rest.

That doesn't bode well for offensive linemen. And the balance of Alabama's best defenses made it harder for individuals to stand out that far above the crowd.

That's why it has to be Derrick Henry.

Hmmm, Henry was probably the most indispensable player, but it’s awfully hard to pick against Amari Cooper as the best overall. C.J. Mosley would also have to be in contention as a pivotal player in two national championships, and you can’t have this conversation without AJ McCarron. Who do you believe is the single best player of the Saban era?

“There’s not going to be some management-type person down Nick Saban’s throat if ESPN is bringing him in. Quite frankly, it would be the opposite. Nick Saban would probably have his ass kissed and sort of be given anything he wanted from ESPN, if you judge this on the history of other famous coaches they’ve brought in.”

I’m sure that Saban will consider a job in TV when he retires from coaching after his 15th national title.

Stewart said entering the NFL from Alabama had helped keep things "going pretty smooth."

"They have a system, they have a program and they do things in a certain way," Stewart said. "Me coming to this program, it helped me a lot being at Alabama. They run things like NFL coaches do, so it pretty much gave me the upper hand."

Still don’t understand why Stewart made the leap, but it sounds like he is doing the right things to be successful, and seems to have walked into a favorable situation with the New York Jets.

He got by how many of us do: with family. It started with words from Alabama coach Nick Saban the day he suffered the injury.

"You can rehab here," Saban told him. "We're paying for your surgery. We're going to do that for you. You can rehab here or you can go to Tulane and if you want to rehab back at home you can do that. Just know that we've got you 100 percent. We've got your back 100 percent."

Right then, Sylve knew he had support. His Alabama family had his back. They weren't going to give up on him.

This is a fantastic read. Sylve has overcome an incredible amount of adversity in his life to get one more shot at the NFL. Keep an eye on Buffalo’s fall camp. If there is justice in the world, Bradley will be healthy and play well enough to make a roster somewhere.

That’s about it for today. Have a great week.

Roll Tide.