Alabama football bold predictions: One player will bulldoze into Crimson Tide record book

Nick Kelly
The Tuscaloosa News

By this time in the offseason when it feels like just about everything has already been discussed, normal, level-headed predictions don't cut it anymore. 

It's time for bold predictions. 

Sure, they're based in reality, but bold at most places isn't that bold in Tuscaloosa. For Alabama football predictions to be bold, they need the energy of the people who tuck logic away as they stack milk crates like stairs and climb them

Here are four bold predictions ahead of the 2021 Alabama football season: 

QB Bryce Young will have best year of any SEC passer

For a first-year starter? Why not? He's got the tools, the pedigree and the support around him with quality coaches and offensive talent, albeit much of it unproven. But unproven doesn't mean incapable. Sure, quarterbacks such as Ole Miss' Matt Corral and Georgia's J.T. Daniels could have big years, but why can't Young be right up there? He's got a shot to be the best of the bunch. 

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An Alabama linebacker will win the Butkus award

The Crimson Tide might have the best linebacking corps in the country with Will Anderson, Christopher Allen, Christian Harris and Henry To'o To'o projected to be the starters. An Alabama linebacker hasn't won the Butkus award, given to the nation's best at the position, since Reuben Foster in 2016 and C.J. Mosley in 2013. That will change this season. 

Will Anderson will have most tackles for loss/sacks of any Alabama player in past decade

All indications out of preseason practices and the scrimmages are that the sophomore linebacker is going to be a significant problem for opposing offenses. His explosive play will translate to him putting together a season that puts him in the Alabama record book. The Crimson Tide keeps track of the team's leader each season in total tackles for loss, which accounts for sacks and tackles behind the line of scrimmage. Ryan Anderson had 19 in 2016. Anderson will surpass that number. 

Alabama will go undefeated again in regular season

Difficult? Maybe. Impossible? Heck no. Alabama has difficult opponents in the SEC, but there's no reason to believe it can't beat Texas A&M, Florida and LSU. Sure, the Crimson Tide can lose to those programs, but there's no game on the schedule in which Alabama is outmatched. The Crimson Tide won 10 straight against SEC opponents in the 2020 regular season. Why not eight in 2021?