In Alabama’s 65-31 win over Arkansas in Week 6, Crimson Tide fans were likely more concerned over the fact that the Alabama defense gave up 31 points than they were celebrating the victory.
To make matters worse, junior cornerback Trevon Diggs suffered a foot injury that will keep him out for the rest of the season in the win.
While Alabama has gotten to 6-0 (3-0 SEC) with ease, there were a few moments on Saturday that will make Tide fans uneasy, particularly the pass defense. There were some busts in coverage during the first half, one which led to an Arkansas touchdown. Nick Saban commented on the issue, making it clear that the players in the secondary are not the only ones responsible for these types of mistakes.
“Pass defense is everybody,” Saban said, per AL.com. “It’s the guys rushing. It’s the guys that play underneath in coverage. It’s the guys that have to cover backs man to man that don’t cover them man to man.
“Everybody needs to get better at what they do,” continued Saban. “That includes the linebackers. It includes the secondary. It includes the guys up front.
“We’re not doing enough of those things consistently correctly to be able to play the way we’d like to play.”
This Alabama defense alone lost a whopping eight players to the 2018 NFL draft, and while the ones on the field now for the Crimson Tide were pieces of top-ranked recruiting classes, there has still been a major learning curve with the lack of experience. This is something Saban has commented on leading up to the season, but he firmly believes any issues with his young defenders will be worked out with more games under their belts.
“Are we capable? Absolutely. Most of the things we make mistakes on are fixable. But we’ve got to get them fixed.”
Alabama’s secondary will be put to the test on Saturday, when they host Missouri and quarterback Drew Lock, who has thrown for nearly 1,500 yards and 11 touchdowns so far this season.