Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

McElroy, offense look to eliminate sacks

A lot of criticism has been made of senior quarterback Greg McElroy’s 11 sacks in the past two games, but both Saban and McElroy’s teammates said the sacks are everyone’s responsibility.

“I don’t think it’s his fault because we’ve got 10 other guys on the field with him,” said junior wide receiver Marquis Maze. “Everything has to work for everything else to work well on offense.”

Even sophomore offensive lineman Barrett Jones took the blame for leaving McElroy in a vulnerable position during each of the those games.

“It’s really hard to say anything to Greg until you really have sat back in the SEC pocket with 350 pounders running after you and trying to diagnose a defense while shifting around,” Jones said. “He definitely has a harder job than a lot of people realize. A lot of people think it’s just really easy. It’s extremely complex what he does on a day-to-day basis.”

While the rest of the team supports McElroy and did not think the sacks were completely his fault, he took full responsibility and recognized the areas where he needs to improve to help the team play to its full potential.

“I’ve got to do a better job of keeping us out of negative plays,” McElroy said. “My checks have got to be better. My efficiency has to be better from a passing standpoint, as far as quick and immediate routes. If I look at where I was as far as seven games last year, it’s night and day between this year, and everyone’s going to try to find a problem. That’s fine. I try to find problems within myself.”

Players of the Week

The Alabama coaching staff named sophomore running back Trent Richardson and junior offensive lineman Alfred McCullough players of the week on offense after their performances in the Ole Miss game.

Richardson’s 220 all-purpose yards was highlighted with an 85-yard screen pass that he took for a touchdown. Richardson is the only player to be recognized by the coaching staff all seven weeks of the season. McCullough made his first career start on Saturday, replacing injured DJ Fluker at right tackle.

On the defensive side of the ball, Mark Barron and C.J. Mosley were named players of the week. Barron recorded a team-high seven tackles and grabbed his second interception of the season. Mosley had five total tackles during the game.

Cade Foster, Marquis Maze, who was the SEC co-special teams player of the week, and Alex Watkins were named players of the week on special teams. ?Maze finished with the third-best game in school history with six punts for 125 yards. He is now ranked fifth nationally and second in the SEC with an average of 18.7 yards per punt return. Foster went 2-for-2 on field goal attempts and had a career-high kick of 49 yards. Watkins most notably laid a bone-crushing hit to set up a big punt return from Maze.

“I think we have done reasonably well on special teams,” Saban said. “Kick return has been better than in the past, from a statistical standpoint, in terms of drive start. Our specialists can be a little more consistent, but I think they all have promise and have done a good job to this point.” 

 

Injuries

At this point, Fluker is the only player wearing a black jersey in practice, and Saban said his status is questionable for the Tennessee game.

While Fluker was the only black-jersey player, Saban said Monday that DeQuan Menzie, Eddie Lacy, Demarcus Milliner and Courtney Upshaw also were limited because of minor bumps and bruises during the game, but they were each back participating in practice on Tuesday.

Saban did not mention the condition of Julio Jones’ hand, but Jones did fully participate in practice on Tuesday and was catching passes.

“Julio is Julio,” Richardson said. “I haven’t seen a difference in him. He’s still playing. He’s still blocking people. He’s still doing what he needs to do to get to the ball. He’s not having any problems. He’ll be ready Saturday”

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