We have finally made it college football fans. The 2023 season is now upon us, as games are set to get underway on Saturday, Aug. 26.
There are many question marks for the Tide entering the 2023 season and it has fans and analysts alike more curious about Alabama than usual.
If Coach Saban and Alabama want to achieve the success that is expected, the Crimson Tide will need several players to step up and impact the games week in and week out.
Here is a list of the ten players I believe will be the most impactful for Alabama this fall!
Malachi Moore | DB
You could make the case that senior defensive back Malachi Moore could be a lot higher on this list. Moore is expected to play all over the backend of the Alabama defense, mostly at star and safety. If Moore can stay healthy, he could be an All-SEC type performer.
Amari Niblack | TE
Amari Niblack has a chance to be a red zone weapon for Alabama in 2023. The sophomore tight end is a mismatch nightmare due to his unique blend of size and athleticism. His improved blocking will allow him to stay on the field more this season as well.
Caleb Downs | DB
There may not be a freshman in the SEC with more hype entering 2023 than Caleb Downs. Downs has basically been a starter since the moment he stepped on campus in Tuscaloosa. He has a special way of always being around the football and making impact plays. Don’t be surprised to see some freshman moments from Downs, but the good, perhaps great, will likely outweigh the bad.
Ja'Corey Brooks | WR
I could have gone with any of the seven or eight wide receivers that could potentially play with the first team, but I decided to go with the guy who has been the most consistent, Ja’Corey Brooks. Brooks doesn’t really do anything “special” but sort of just makes plays when the Tide needs him to. I am expecting a more impactful season from Brooks than most.
Deontae Lawson | ILB
Talent and ability are not the question relative to Deontae Lawson, it is a matter of staying healthy. Lawson has all the tools to be not only the best inside linebacker in the SEC but perhaps even the country. It has been a few years since the Tide has had a true impact player at inside backer, I fully expect Lawson to change that in 2023.
Kool-Aid McKinstry | CB
I almost feel bad for not having Kool-Aid a little higher on the list but the fact is I don’t expect many teams to test his side of the field in 2023. McKinstry is arguably the top corner in the country but also excels as a punt returner.
Jaheim Oatis | DL
The defensive line has been a little disappointing for the Tide over the past couple of seasons, but there is certainly potential for substantial improvements in 2023. Jaheim Oatis is a big part of that. The super sophomore could be in for a special season along the Alabama defensive line and his play could go a long way in determining just how good the Tide defense can be this season.
Dallas Turner | OLB
With the departure of Will Anderson to the NFL, all eyes will now be on junior outside linebacker Dallas Turner. Turner has been a really good player for the Tide in his first two seasons, but now is the time for him to take the mantle and become one of the premier defensive players in the country.
JC Latham | OT
JC Latham is one of the best offensive tackles in the country and that alone is enough to make him one of Alabama’s most impactful players this season. But the fact that Alabama is pretty limited on options behind him, makes his value to the team that much more important. Latham will be charged with anchoring an offensive line that looks to recreate that physical brand that was synonymous with Alabama football.
I am sure everyone is shocked by this selection. The quarterback is the most important position on the team and will greatly impact the results of the season for the Tide. Whether it’s Jalen Milroe, Ty Simpson, Tyler Buchner, or even freshman Dylan Lonergan, being consistent and taking care of the ball will be at a premium for Alabama’s signal caller.
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