Over the past few years, there have been claims that former Alabama players enter the NFL with more injuries than players from other schools.

While that’s a tough thing to prove, it is a stigma that has hung around Tuscaloosa during coach Nick Saban’s time at the helm of the program.

However, on his weekly Thursday radio show, Saban categorically denied those claims, saying Crimson Tide players simply play in more high-stakes games than players from other programs (via 247Sports):

“There’s absolutely no truth to that,” Saban said Thursday. “We have more players playing in the NFL than any other school in the country, more guys on NFL rosters than any school in the country. And our players here probably play more games against tougher competition, aight, than any other school in the country, as well.

“If you look at how many playoff games that we’ve played and how many SEC Championship Games they’ve played in, our teams have played 15 games in a season several times, which not very many teams do, and 14 games almost all the time.

“So, they probably play more games against better competition based on the SEC and the other teams that we’ve had to play. And I’m just proud of the way they’ve developed and how many guys have been able to go on and play at the next level. I don’t think there’s real, honest proof of anything about our guys being more beat up than somebody else when they get to the next level.”

Indeed, having gone to the national title game the past two years means Alabama players are playing in more games than their opponents. Saban gave credit to Alabama’s medical staff for the great work it does keeping players healthy for the long, grueling seasons.

LSU, another school that produces a ton of NFL talent, for example, has played five fewer games than the Crimson Tide over the past two seasons.

Fair or not, though, people will likely continue to question whether Saban asks too much of his young players.