How Alabama QBs did in their first NFL games under center

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Mac gets the call

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Alabama downed Auburn, again—this time, it was via a QB battle at the Patriots' camp in Foxboro. Mac Jones is the new starter in New England, and Cam Newton is out (entirely). The move makes Jones the latest Crimson Tide play-caller to line up under center in the NFL. So how did the other Alabama quarterbacks fare early in their careers, some in their first start? Let's take a look...

Harry Gilmer

(AP Photo)

Harry Gilmer did not start as a rookie for Washington. The No. 1 overall pick in the 1948 NFL draft did start three games in his second season. He saw a lot of action in games while sharing time with the legendary Sammy Baugh.

Bart Starr

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Bart Starr was a 17th-round pick and didn't make any starts as a rookie, though he appeared in nine games for Green Bay. The Packer legend made 11 starts in his second season, 1958, and went 3-8. The quarterback he replaced in Green Bay went on to become an AFL legend with the Boston Patriots among other teams—Babe Parilli.

Joe Namath

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Joe Namath came to Broadway from Tuscaloosa courtesy of a $427,000 contract from New York Jets owner Sonny Werblin. Namath actually made his first pro start in a 1965 preseason game as a rookie, playing a half and completing 4-of-6 passes for 80 yards while leading the Jets to a 10-3 halftime lead. New York finished with a 26-16 win. He made his first regular-season start against the Buffalo Bills in a 33-21 Jets loss. Namath was 19-of-40 passing for 282 yards with two interceptions and two touchdowns. The Jets fell to 0-3 en route to an 0-5-1 opening.

Steve Sloan

(AP Photo)

Steve Sloan played in eight games over two seasons for the Atlanta Falcons. He made one start—which was a losing effort. During those eight games, he completed 10-of-31 passes, with zero touchdowns and four interceptions.

Ken Stabler

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On Oct. 17, 1971, a young Ken "Snake" Stabler would get his first start with the Raiders. He was 11-of-15 for 99 yards in a 34-10 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Scott Hunter

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With Bart Starr injured in 1971, the Packers turned to another Alabama QB for 10 starts—Scott Hunter. He went 4-5-1 overall, including a 42-40 loss to the New York Giants in the opening week of the season. Hunter was 9-of-16 for 158 yards with 2 TDs and a pick.

Richard Todd

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Richard Todd was another Alabama product who became a first-round pick of the New York Jets. He backed up Namath at the start of his rookie season in 1976. Todd eventually made six starts, going 2-4. Todd started on Halloween against the Buffalo Bills and was an ugly 6-of-20 for 87 yards with 1 TD and 2 picks in a loss.

Jeff Rutledge

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In 1979, Jeff Rutledge was 6-of-11 for 71 yards with a TD pass and 2 picks in a loss to the Chicago Bears. It was his lone start as a rookie.

Jay Barker

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Jay Barker was drafted in the 1995 NFL draft in the fifth round by the Green Bay Packers, but did not make the team. Subsequently, Barker was on the roster of the New England Patriots and the Carolina Panthers but never played in a regular-season game.

Brodie Croyle

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Brodie Croyle did not play as a rookie with the Kansas City Chiefs. Overall, he was 0-10 as a starter. He made his first start in a loss to the Denver Broncos, going 17-of-30 for 162 yards in 2007.

Greg McElroy

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Greg McElroy made one start for the New York Jets in 2012, his lone year in the NFL. He was 14-of-24 for 185 yards in a loss to the San Diego Chargers.

A.J. McCarron

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In 2015, A.J. McCarron made his first start for the Bengals, and it was a successful one. The Alabama star was 15-of-21 for 192 yards and a TD in a victory over the San Francisco 49ers, whose starter Blaine Gabbert threw 50 passes.

Tua Tagovailoa

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Tua Tagovailoa made his first appearance in a 24-0 win over the Jets last season. He was 2-for-2. After a bye week, he got the start against the Los Angeles Rams, and went 12-of-22 for 93 yards and a TD in the Miami victory.

*Jalen Hurts

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OK, OK—Jalen Hurts was drafted out of Oklahoma, but he starred at Alabama, too. Hurts replaced Carson Wentz in Philly in December and led the Eagles to a surprising victory over Taysom Hill and the New Orleans Saints. Hurts was 17-of-30 for 167 yards and a TD passing. He also rushed 18 times for 106 yards. More from List Wire: How famous college football stadiums got their names. Grading first-round QBs drafted since 2000 in their rookie seasons.

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