Grading Alabama football's performance in its win over Tennessee
Alabama continued its dominance of the Tennessee Volunteers with a 48-17 win in Neyland Stadium, a place UA has not been threatened by Tennessee since its last loss there in 2006.
Here is how we graded the Crimson Tide’s performance.
Mac Jones was electric again, and Najee Harris capitalized with three rushing touchdowns. The weight of Jaylen Waddle’s departure did not drag Alabama down — this week.
Holding Tennessee to 302 yards and 4-for-16 on third down were impressive numbers, among UA’s best defensive performances dating back to last season. Pass rush (and the statistical benefits that come with it) could have bumped this performance to an A or A+.
Special Teams: B
Will Reichard continues to be a breath of fresh air for Alabama’s place-kicking woes that go back nearly a decade. Charlie Scott did not prove right away to be UA’s answer at punter, but he was not a detriment either.
The few strong points of Tennessee’s team, its offensive line and linebacker corps, were neutralized to varying degrees with UA’s plan of attack. Plus, the Crimson Tide’s offense stayed intact without Waddle and with offensive line changes.
The game suddenly became comfortable in the opening minutes of the third quarter with Malachi Moore’s fumble return touchdown. Rivalry game wins that are sealed before the end of the third quarter are hard to criticize too severely.
Reach Brett Hudson at 205-722-0196 or firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter, @Brett_Hudson