Alabama football vs. Mercer report card: Why the offense earned a B

Nick Kelly
The Tuscaloosa News

Alabama football came away with the win, but it didn't emerge with a 4.0 GPA in a 48-14 rout of Mercer on Saturday. Not with a lack of crisp play at times. 

Here are our grades from the win over Mercer: 

Offense: B

The offense still scored plenty, but the way it played the first few drives against Mercer, that's not something that earns an A. Not when it's against FCS Mercer. 

Defense: A

While the offense started slow, the defense held strong. Even without two starting cornerbacks in Jalyn Armour-Davis and Josh Jobe not playing, the defense was stout and seldom let up much of anything to the Bears for much of the game. In the first half, the Bears had more penalty yards than offensive yards. 

Special teams: A-

The special teams sparked Alabama in its slow start when Chris Braswell blocked a punt that led to a scoop-and-score for Jase McClellan. But Will Reichard's field goal streak came to an end with a miss in the second half. Remarkable that it reached 19 straight. 

Coaching: A-

Alabama could have started better. But overall, still a successful afternoon by the team and the Crimson Tide stepped up after the sputtering start. 

Overall: B+

Alabama played well and still had a big win, but it came against an FCS team. The Crimson Tide could have been more crisp at times across the board, but there was still plenty of positive in the win.