Defensive lineThe defensive line has monster size. Alphonse Taylor (Florida State) will line up at defensive tackle along with Tyler Nero (Auburn). Taylor demands a double-team because of his size. Nero stood out throughout the week. He has excellent lower body strength and plays with a lot of aggression. Jamario Alford has been getting after it this week. He is a recruit flying under the radar. He plays with a high motor and does a great job using his hands.
Jamichael Winston (Arkansas) replaced injured teammate Darius Philon (Alabama). Winston is quick off the ball, has long arms and a dangerous pass rusher. Torey Agee (Vanderbilt) is another big-bodied player who will work at defensive end and move inside. He is a smart, fundamentally sound player.
LinebackersThe linebacker unit is among the best ever who have competed in this game. Reggie Ragland (Alabama), Tyler Hayes (Alabama) and Ryan Anderson (Alabama) will receive most of the attention. They are well deserving. The trio has been excellent all week at practice flying to the football and showing great instincts. They have very good size and can fill the gap. The king of the week has been Anderson. 'Team Alabama' will move him around in the game from defensive end to middle and outside linebacker. He is a bull when pass rushing and his motor is always running. Beniquez Brown had a solid week at practice.
The other linebackers in this game include Larry Pettaway (UAB), Joseph Peterson (Georgia State) and Terris Lewis. They will play on the outside, and all three are physically very impressive looking recruits. Peterson was excellent in pass rush using his hands and quickness to get past offensive linemen. Pettaway is a specimen. He is an impressive recruit who flies to the football. His strength is tackling, and he is ready to hit somebody on Saturday.
Defensive backsThe secondary is solid and has more size than ever observed in this event. Safeties like Derrick Moncrief (6-3, 200), Trae Elston (6-0, 180) and Chris Humes (5-11, 200) give the team some very good athletes who can cover. Moncrief is the most physical player and itching to hit somebody.
The players expected to play cornerback this weekend include Kivon Coman (Mississippi State), Jacoby Glenn (Kentucky) and Kelton Brackett (UAB). The trio have been excellent throughout the week. Brackett displayed great cover skills and great during one-on-ones at practice. Humes and Elston will move around between safety and corner in the game.