Nick Saban was arguably the most popular man in Mobile, Alabama on Wednesday. The Crimson Tide coach visited Senior Bowl practices and spoke to media members.

Early in his chat with the media, Saban said, “… especially good to see our players be able to do it, and Jalen (Hurts), who I still consider one of our players…” With that, the door was open for Saban to take questions about his former quarterback.

One reporter asked Saban how he would sell NFL teams on Hurts. Saban pointed to the changes going on in the NFL, where dual-threat quarterbacks like Hurts are becoming more popular than ever.

“There’s a lot of guys playing in the NFL now that are having a lot of success that are similar style players to Jalen, guys that can make plays with their feet,” Saban told reporters. “I think you know who they are. I think the success of those players has kind of broken the stereotype of, you got to be a dropback passer and this is the only way you can win in the NFL. You see (Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick) Mahomes, the guy in Baltimore (Lamar Jackson), all these guys are athletic guys who make plays with their feet.”

It will be interesting to see whether Hurts’ NFL team views him as a full-time quarterback like Mahomes and Jackson or if the team will try to use him in a multi-position Taysom Hill-like role. Senior Bowl practices and Saturday’s game are giving teams the opportunity to evaluate him up-close.

Hurts had a warm reunion with his former coach and teammates.