Nick Saban doesn't agree with AJ McCarron's assessment of the Alabama offense

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron (10) waves to the crowd with mother Dee Dee Bonner left, and Alabama head coach Nick Saban at right, during Alabama Senior Day celebration before an NCAA football game against Chattanooga, Saturday, Nov. 23, 2013, at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (AP Photo/AL.com, Vasha Hunt)
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Nick Saban was asked Wednesday about AJ McCarron's comments regarding Alabama's offense in its 23-17 loss to Ole Miss.

McCarron said Tuesday on his weekly Alabama-area radio appearance that he's known Saban to "handcuff" his offensive coordinators and that the offense was lacking leadership. Saban didn't agree with McCarron's evaluations of the game.

"I don't know how AJ would really know, but I don't necessarily see that as the case," Saban said during his weekly media teleconference.

Saban complimented the leadership skills of Blake Sims, the man who succeeded McCarron as Alabama's starting QB. After McCarron was the starter for three years, Sims and Jacob Coker, a highly-regarded transfer from Florida State, competed to be Alabama's starting QB. While Sims did throw the interception that ended Alabama's chances of a win, he didn't play poorly against Ole Miss, either.

"I think that leadership is something that we have several guys that have played a lot of football around here that do a good job," Saban said Wednesday. "I think sometimes people look at the quarterback position as the guy that has to be the leader and I think sometimes when you have a new quarterback and that guy is really concerned about what he is supposed to do, maybe he doesn't look to be perceived as the guy that's affecting other people.

"But actually, I think Blake does a pretty job of ... [Sims is] very well-liked by his teammates. He's a very positive, high-energy guy that has shown leadership. I don't think we played real well last week for whatever reasons, I don't know that that's all leadership. I'm sort of responsible for all that as coaches and players to make sure we're ready to play our best against good teams in tough environments on the road."

Former Georgia Bulldogs and Minnesota Vikings QB Fran Tarkenton was more direct in his criticism of McCarron. Tarkenton was on WJOX Wednesday morning and called McCarron an average QB at best who should keep his mouth shut. Given that Saban is publicly disagreeing with McCarron, it may not be bad advice.

"AJ McCarron, he needs to be quiet," Tarkenton said. "He was so fortunate to be in that program. He’s an average quarterback at best. he couldn’t have played anywhere else but at Alabama. And to make any kind of comment of that, it’s just disrespectful. He shouldn’t have made it and he should keep his mouth shut (and) praise Saban and Alabama for the rest of his life."

- - - - - - -

Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!