Every article about the Alabama secondary is legally required to tell you that Alabama has to replace all six defensive backs from its dime package. I know it. You know it. I know you know it. But hey, it’s the law. So let’s just get it out of the way.
Alabama has to replace all six defensive backs from its dime package.
Okay, on to the actual stuff.
Seriously, though, the makeup of the secondary for 2018 is one of the biggest questions facing the team. There are plenty of contenders, and one guy who seems likely to finally get his chance to start is Shyheim Carter.
I wrote about Carter before last year’s A-Day game; and, dadgummit, I’m writing about him again. Carter was a 4 star recruit from Louisiana in the Class of 2016, and he’s been one of the top back-ups at cornerback since early in his career.
As a true freshman, Carter was inserted into the line-up late against Ole Miss because of injuries and played in nine total games. Last year as a sophomore, Carter played in all 14 games, including coming off the bench to replace Minkah Fitzpatrick. He also replaced Tony Brown in dime packages the national championship after Brown gave up an 80 yard touchdown pass. While Carter only played a few snaps, it’s notable the staff trusted him to make a change like that on such a big stage.
With all his previous experience and all the attrition in the secondary, Carter feels like a pretty safe bet to earn a starting role, probably at star (the nickel back). That’s where he has primarily played, but he has taken some snaps at outside corner.
Heading into his junior season, Shyheim Carter could be poised for a breakout year. We’ll see how he looks on Saturday.