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Jumbo Package: Gump Day!

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Brian Branch and Malachi Moore continue to battle for bulk of the snaps in the secondary

Syndication: Gainesville Sun Brad McClenny/The Gainesville Sun via Imagn Content Services, LLC

In case you missed it, the SEC released the 2022 football schedule, and we have you covered right here on RBR. Austin Peay is a dud of a game, but ULM is a decent cupcake game, and Utah State isn’t too bad for a non-conference game either. They regularly put guys into the NFL. And then Texas headlines the out-of-conference slate.

Bolden said he appreciated the confidence coaches showed to not yank him immediately.

“I believe that they know exactly what kind of skill sets I bring and attributes that I bring,” Bolden said. “And dropping one pass or a pass at all, it’s not like me. So you know I felt like it was good that they kept me in because you know for any other players you want to keep playing that guy or whoever to you know, if you’re a receiver or quarterback, to keep pressing on. That way they build more confidence. But just like with that being said, I mean I dropped the ball. It is what it is. Move on to the next play.”

That drop was horrific, but fortunately it didn’t matter as Alabama scored anyway. And Slade seems to have the right mindset about it. Here’s to hoping he can turn his relatively slow start of the season into a big year in the upcoming games.

For the third game in a row, Brian Branch started at Star, or nickel defensive back, for Alabama. On Florida’s first drive of the second quarter, Branch pressured Gator quarterback Emory Jones and broke up his pass attempt on fourth down to give the football back to his offense.

Midway through the second quarter on Saturday, Branch was replaced by Malachi Moore, who started 10 games at the position last year. That’s not that unusual, given that Branch and Moore can play the Star and Money roles, but Branch remained on the sideline when the Crimson Tide used its dime personnel while Daniel Wright stepped in as the sixth defensive back.

Branch would return to the field to play special teams and spelled Moore for one play while the latter dealt with a helmet issue. Head coach Nick Saban on Monday explained the change.

The use of both Branch and Moore as the Star has been fascinating so far this season. Both guys absolutely should be starters, but there’s only one spot open. I’ve said this before, but I still think that Brian Branch would be an excellent free safety. Let him play that while Moore plays Star, and then DeMarcco Hellams comes in as the Money linebacker in dime packages. But that’s just me.

Despite Bryant-Denny Stadium sitting empty and quiet almost 900 miles away, Tuscaloosa and much of the Crimson Tide community on social media erupted when an ABC camera panning the capacity crowd focused on Harding in a crimson and white University of Alabama T-shirt — a humorous contrast against a veritable ocean of Penn State white.

The phrase on his T-shirt? ... “WHERE LEGENDS ARE MADE,” written in white letters, positioned just above the trademarked Alabama “A.”

The little speck of red in a sea of white was absolutely beautiful, and I respect this man for doing everything in his power to make sure Auburn lost last weekend. Just kudos all around. To all involved.

Six former Alabama players scored touchdowns during Week 2 in running backs Damien Harris (Patriots), Najee Harris (Steelers) and Derrick Henry (Titans), wide receivers Henry Ruggs III (Raiders) and Calvin Ridley (Falcons) and quarterback Jalen Hurts (Eagles). Henry scored three touchdowns as he led Tennessee to a come-from-behind win over the Seahawks.

For Najee Harris, it was the first touchdown of his young NFL career. A couple of other rookies recorded firsts in cornerback Pat Surtain II (Broncos) intercepting his first pass and offensive lineman Landon Dickerson (Eagles) making his debut after recovering from a knee injury.

As usual, Alabama alumni continue to dominate the NFL. In particular, Derrick Henry is still the best running back in the world as he absolutely evaporated a Seahawks defense that had the Titans down by two touchdowns with less than 8 minutes to go.

Pat Surtain got to intercept Trevor Lawrence, which I’m sure was sweet revenge for the 2018 national championship.

Mac Jones and Jalen Hurts both had solid days, but Tua Tagovailoa was knocked out of the game at the start of the 1st quarter after getting blasted a few times in a row due to disastrously bad pass blocking.


That’s all for now. We have a Southern Miss preview coming, and CB969 has you covered with a recruiting update. There is the potential announcement of 2022 5-star CB Denver Harris, who may or may not actually commit to a team.

Roll Tide!