Playing at Low Tide

Alabama's recent draft history among defensive players doesn't bode well for the Green Bay Packers' top pick, HaHa Clinton-Dix. Here are the NFL resumes for the 18 NFL veterans who played under Alabama coach Nick Saban.

Nick Saban became Alabama's head coach in 2007, meaning his first draft class was 2008. Here are the NFL resumes for the 18 Saban-era defensive players drafted by NFL teams from 2008 through 2013.

Defensive backs

CB Dee Milliner, first round (No. 9 overall), 2013 (Jets) — As a rookie, he picked off three passes but allowed seven touchdowns, according to He was benched twice, though coach Rex Ryan was a staunch defender throughout the year. Of 110 corners who played at least 25 percent of the snaps, he ranked 66th in PFF's grading system.

S Mark Barron, first round (No. 7), 2012 (Buccaneers) — Barron ranked 59th out of the 86 safeties who played at least 25 percent of the defensive snaps in 2013 and 75th out of 88 in 2012. He has three interceptions while starting 30 of 32 games.

CB Dre Kirkpatrick, first round (No. 17), 2012 (Bengals) — He rarely played in his first season-and-a-half but picked off three passes in the final six games of 2013. He ranked 98th out of 110 corners on the season, though.

CB DeQuan Menzie, fifth round (No. 146), 2012 (Chiefs) — Signed with Panthers during offseason but has not played a game in the NFL.

CB Kareem Jackson, first round (No. 20), 2010 (Texans) — Jackson has started for most of his four seasons. In 2013, he allowed six touchdowns without an interception and ranked 78th out of 110 corners. He ranked 13th out of 113 in 2012, 79th out of 109 in 2011 and 96th out of 100 in 2010.

CB Javier Arenas, second round (No. 50), 2010 (Chiefs) — He has two interceptions and 12 career starts as a decent role player and returner.

CB Marquis Johnson, seventh round (No. 211), 2010 (Rams) — Played five games in 2010 and 2011.

S Rashad Johnson, third round (No. 95), 2009 (Cardinals) — He's started 21 games in five seasons, with three of his six career interceptions coming last season, when he played a career-high 70.5 percent of the snaps despite losing part of his middle finger during an early-season game. With a first-round pick used on Deone Bucannon, he'll battle to be the team's third safety.


ILB Nico Johnson, fourth round (No. 99), 2013 (Chiefs) — Johnson played in six games with one start as a rookie.

OLB Dont'a Hightower, first round (No. 25), 2012 (Patriots) — Hightower ranked 12th out of 35 4-3 outside linebackers in 2013, thanks in large part to an excellent finish to the season and impact play against the run. He ranked eighth out of 43 in 2012, when he was mostly a part-time player. He's started 27 games in two seasons and might be on the precipice of becoming a quality starter. Jon Scott, who covers the Patriots for, said Hightower is "really good" at times but "invisible" at others.

OLB Courtney Upshaw, second round (No. 35), 2012 (Ravens) — After a decent rookie season, Upshaw plunged to 37th out of 42 3-4 outside linebackers. In PFF's pass-rushing productivity metric, only Frank Zombo and Andy Mulumba were worse than Upshaw.

MLB Rolando McClain, first round (No. 8), 2010 (Raiders) — Last played in 2012. He retired from the Ravens in 2013 and again in 2014. In three seasons with the Raiders, he averaged 82 tackles but had just 6.5 sacks, one interception and one forced fumble. That's as many turnover plays as retirements.

Defensive linemen

Jesse Williams, fifth round (No. 137), 2013 (Seahawks) — He sat out the season with a knee injury.

Quinton Dial, fifth round (No. 157), 2013 (49ers) — Dial played in 18 snaps in three games as a rookie.

Josh Chapman, fifth round (No. 136), 2012 (Colts) — Chapman didn't play as a rookie and averaged about 20 snaps per game in a reserve role in 2013.

Marcell Dareus, first round (No. 3), 2011 (Bills) — Dareus is far and away the best of the Saban-era defenders. The third overall pick in 2011, he was added to the Pro Bowl as an injury replacement last year. Out of 69 defensive tackles (3-4 and 4-3 schemes), Dareus ranked sixth last year. He had 7.5 sacks after back-to-back seasons of 5.5.

Terrence Cody, second round (No. 57), 2010 (Ravens) — "Mount Cody" has fallen out of favor with the Ravens, with 478 snaps in 2011, 367 in 2012 and 240 in 2013. He has 87 tackles, no sacks and no forced fumbles in four seasons. He re-signed to the team with a one-year, minimum-salary deal during the offseason.

Brandon Deaderick, seventh round (No. 247), 2010 (Patriots) — He started 15 games in four seasons, including one last year with Jacksonville. He is a free agent.

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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at

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