Nick Saban: Alabama football receiver Jaylen Waddle a 'game-time decision'

Brett Hudson
Tide Sports

Jaylen Waddle's return to the practice field on Tuesday heightened hopes that the Alabama football wide receiver would make a triumphant return from his ankle injury in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game on Monday against Ohio State.

Here is everything UA coaches and players had to say about Waddle since his return to the practice field on Tuesday.

Head coach Nick Saban

"He's been able to practice some. His status for the game is still relatively up in the air and will probably be a game-time decision."

Asked by The Tuscaloosa News' Cecil Hurt how Waddle has looked in practice, Saban said, "I don't have any crystal ball to know. The issue with injuries is when a guy does practice, how does he respond to the workload? Sometimes if a guy practices one day and gets sore the next, you can't practice him the next day so you keep trying to build up his workload to where he can play. That's a work in progress right now so you can't really predict where that's going to be. This is something we're trying to evaluate but not anything we can try to make a prediction on at this moment."

Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian

"He was back out at practice yesterday. We'll see where it goes from here. Clearly we've got about a week or so until the game, so probably a better question for Coach Saban, but yes, he was back at practice yesterday."

Alabama receiver DeVonta Smith

"It's amazing just to see him recover. I'm glad that he's recovering well and that everything is just going as planned. I think he's getting back into it. Of course he's going to take some time just for him to get back comfortable with everything, but he looks good to me."

Asked if he thought Waddle had a chance to play on Monday, DeVonta Smith said, "No comment." 

Alabama receiver John Metchie III

"Waddle has looked good. He's been doing a lot of treatment. He's been on top of everything, and I feel like that's that. Him coming back, as to him coming back, I think everyone knows what he brings and what that brings when he's on the field to the defense, how they look at that, how dynamic our offense is. So I feel like everyone kind of knows what he brings to the table.'

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones

"Yeah, he actually looked really good, but I don't know if I can answer that question properly because you've got to ask Coach Saban and the training staff. But he's worked really hard in his rehab, and we'll see what happens."

Reach Brett Hudson at 205-722-0196 or bhudson@tuscaloosanews.com or via Twitter, @Brett_Hudson