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Jumbo Package: Are Jacksonville Jaguars eyeing Evan Neal at No. 1?

Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

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NFL: Scouting Combine Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

As you undoubtedly heard, blazing fast Louisville WR Tyler Harrell announced his intention to transfer to Alabama. Tony Tsoukalas examines the ways in which he could help the offense.

Alabama could essentially use Harrell as a decoy, sending him deep while keeping Brooks at the line of scrimmage. From there, Young can zip a quick pass out to the sophomore and let him use his 6-foot-2, 196-pound frame to his advantage.

Earle also stands to take advantage of the extra space. During his freshman season last year, the shifty slot receiver recorded 11 of his 12 receptions on passes inside of 10 yards, averaging 7.5 yards after the catch.

Yet another too early SEC projection has Alabama atop the list.

Building an offensive front better equipped to protect quarterback Bryce Young is Alabama’s highest offseason priority after giving up a whopping 41 sacks in 2021, the third-most in the Power Five. The Tide have a new position coach, former South Carolina and Kentucky assistant Eric Wolford, and will welcome in a well-regarded transfer in Vanderbilt tackle Tyler Steen, who has started on both ends of the line and will at worst provide quality depth.

The OL is getting plenty of well earned criticism this offseason, but it should be noted that Bryce, Heisman notwithstanding, caused many of the QB pressures last season by holding the ball too long. The light bulb seemed to go off after the comeback in Auburn though, and if he plays the way he did from that point forward, we should be in good shape. He hit enough WRs in the hands to win the national championship game while under duress. We all know the rest.

The NFL Draft starts Thursday, and Evan Neal is trending toward possibly going first overall.

Neal played left tackle, right tackle and left guard during 40 career starts in the SEC, which is the most NFL-ready conference in college football. He’s technically sound and fluid in his footwork. In the rare instances a defender gets an early step on him, Neal has top-shelf recovery skills. While teams have divergent opinions on where the top three tackles are on this board, Neal is the clear No. 1 here.

With Neal, the Jaguars could continue to deploy Robinson at left tackle and Jawaan Taylor on the right side, with the rookie playing guard for a year (teaming up with Brandon Scherff) before sliding outside to replace Robinson in 2023.

That could give the Jaguars the kind of protection they need for the guy who became the first overall pick a year ago, quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Pederson, an offensive coach, surely wants to make his mark on that side of the ball. It can’t happen without good blocking.

It should be noted that nobody should ever believe anything leading up to the draft. Nearly very team takes a smoke and mirrors approach. I’ve seen Neal mocked everywhere from 1st to 8th.

Last, learning the new Miami playbook has been a family affair for the Tagovailoas.

“For me, I like to draw it up when I can say it, so I’ll say it, I’ll draw it up where everyone goes, and then I’ll have my brother or my dad, someone, test me and quiz me on it.

“Then from there, I’ll go outside in the back yard, and then I’ll move my dad or my brother or whoever is out there — my mom sometimes. I’ll move them, telling them ‘Hey, you’re at the Z now,’ or ‘You’re the X,’ or ‘You’re the Y,’ just so I can picture it better, so when we do come out there, it’s a lot easier when guys do ask, ‘Hey, where do I go and what do I run?’”

Tagovailoa said his folks are happy to pretend to be NFL wide receivers.

We were curious about Galu’s 40 time, but have had no response. As an aside, Brian Flores apparently wanted Jordan Love rather than Tua. Nice evaluating there, Brian.

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

Roll Tide.