Spring is a time for development, Alabama football coach Nick Saban emphasized during his first press availability of the practice season. Yet, some Crimson Tide players didn’t take the field on Monday.
“We have quite a few guys that are injured to some degree,” Saban said.
The 71-year-old head coach provided updates on which members of the roster are currently sidelined. As is customary for Tide football, the specific ailments each player is dealing with were not explained, but loose timelines were provided.
Redshirt-sophomore linebacker and Mobile Christian alum Deontae Lawson and junior linebacker Dallas Turner both had surgery and “are probably out of the spring completely.” Saban said there “shouldn’t be any issues for them moving forward.”
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Lawson appeared in 11 games last fall, recording 51.0 tackles and 2.5 of which were for a loss. Turner was active for all 13 games, registering 37.0 tackles, nine quarterback hits and four sacks. There’s a leadership opening on the defensive side of the ball with Brian Branch, Henry To’oTo’o and Will Anderson all bound for the NFL. Lawson and Turner’s rehab should give opportunities for others to fill those roles before the summer.
Senior running back and Hueytown’s Roydell Williams and junior defensive back DeVonta Smith are “recovering from injures but probably will be able to return at some point” this spring, according to Saban. Williams was fourth on the team last year with 56 rushing attempts, totaling four touchdowns and 250 yards. Smith appeared in 10 games in 2022, mostly on special teams.
Junior tight end Robbie Ouzts, redshirt-junior defensive lineman and Pickens County alum Jah-Marien Latham and redshirt-senior defensive lineman Justin Eboigbe will be limited and likely won’t participate in April 22′s A-Day game.
“(Ouzts, Latham mand Eboigbe) will be able to do certain things in practice, but they will be limited to some of the things that they can and can’t do and probably won’t be able to have full contact or be involved in the scrimmage at all this year,” Saban said.
Eboigbe suffered a neck injury last fall and was ruled out for the season in October. Saban previously spoke about Eboigbe getting a procedure that “would enhance his opportunity to play in the future.” Eboigbe tweeted “Back” in January, before tweeting on March 9 “Got Great News!”
Nick Alvarez is a reporter for Alabama Media Group. Follow him on Twitter @nick_a_alvarez or email him at NAlvarez@al.com.
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