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Alabama Football Film Room: What do the Tide have in new OL Landon Dickerson?

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Dickerson was an elite talent coming out of high school but has had terrible injury luck.

NCAA Football: Chick-fil-A Kickoff-Alabama vs Florida State John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Landon Dickerson is a bit of an enigma. The redshirt junior left Florida State as a graduate transfer and picked Alabama, one of his finalists back when he committed to the Seminoles out of high school.

He was a borderline 5 star recruit, and he was starting at right guard by Week 2 of his freshman year. Unfortunately, his season was cut short after eight games due to an injury. Dickerson bounced back, however, and earned the starting job at left guard heading into the 2017 season. This time, he only played in four games before suffering another season-ending injury.

Dickerson bounced back once more and kicked out to right tackle, earning the starting job. He missed a couple games but returned to the line-up at left tackle against Louisville in 2018. Dickerson suffered a third straight season-ending injury.

When he was healthy, he was good enough to win a starting gig at three different positions; and you could see the talent. Plus, he’s played every position but center. With the Tide’s offensive line not set in stone, there is an opportunity for Dickerson to show what’s he’s got in fall practice.

(2016) 2nd and 1: Dickerson is in just his third ever start, at right guard. He surges forward on the snap and contacts the defensive lineman. Dickerson has one hand on the outside of the lineman’s inside shoulder and the other hand smack dab in the middle of his chest. He turns and drives the defender away to the side. Dalvin Cook runs through the hole, breaks an arm tackle, and is off for a touchdown.

( 2017) 2nd and 8: Dickerson (#69) is at left guard. He briefly chips Daron Payne (#94) before moving up to the second level where he has no one to block. Dickerson lets Rashaan Evans (#32) glide by him since he knows the reverse is coming, and he starts moving back in that direction. He is facing the line of scrimmage and looking for someone to hit. Dickerson spots Minkah Fitzpatrick (#29) coming back, and he just lays him out.

2nd and 1: Dickerson goes up against Payne in the run game here. He gets low and is able to move Payne a few steps to the side, keeping out of the hole long enough for the running back to scoot through. However, Dickerson lets Payne’s arms get inside of him and is held back at arm’s length. Payne comes off the block and gets ahold of the back, along with several other defenders. Still, it’s a solid gain.

1st and 10: Dickerson once again matches up against Payne. Dickerson fires into Payne’s chest and holds up well against Payne’s strength. He doesn’t give any ground and neutralizes Payne.

(2018) 2nd and 16: Dickerson is playing right tackle for the Seminoles now. He immediately gets to the second level and engages the linebacker, easily negating him (though the play ended getting snuffed out well away from Dickerson). There’s nothing fancy to this play, but I just wanted to show how well he moves up.

3rd and 16: It’s the next play. Dickerson blocks down on the defensive lineman. He gets good leverage and gets right in the defender’s chest; and he churns his feeting, driving the other guy aside. The running back shoots through the vacated space and picks up a nice chunk of yards.

1st and 10: Dickerson has solid kick-step. He shuffles back before punching the defensive end with his outside arm. He maintains his balance well while the defender does not, and Dickerson uses this to force the defender onto the ground. Once there, Dickerson gives him another little shove for good measure.

1st and 10: Not so great for Dickerson here. He doesn’t get deep at all, and his feet are barely moving when the defensive end reaches him. Dickerson punches at him, but #35 swats his arm away and blows by him. Dickerson hurriedly spins around and makes a diving shove. QB Deondre Francois deftly avoids the rusher and steps up into the pocket. With time to throw, he uncorks a tight spiral into the leaping arms of a defensive back.