Roman Harper identifies key defensive changes for Alabama 'to be great'
Roman Harper is specific about what Alabama’s defense needs to rectify heading into the 2023 campaign.
During an appearance on The Next Round, the SEC Network analyst shared his thoughts on Alabama’s defense heading into the Week 1 matchup vs. Middle Tennessee.
Last year “they did not cause enough turnovers and create opportunities for their offense to get on short fields…that has to change if Alabama wants to be great this year”@AlabamaFTBL @Harp41 @SECNetwork #RollTide pic.twitter.com/65QqJ8xx44
— The Next Round (@NextRoundLive) August 31, 2023
Harper cites the lack of takeaways from last season as something that needs to increase.
“Last year they didn’t not cause enough turnovers and create opportunities for their offense to get on short fields…” Harper said. “That has to change if Alabama wants to be great this year.”
Harper is encouraged by the mindset that’s been preached and fostered during the offseason.
“They need to put hands on people and whup people up front. If they can do that, they’ve got a chance,” Harper said. “But if you don’t whup people up front and look like the more physical and dominating team that we saw Alabama in the early 2000s and early 2010s, then they’re going to look very much so the same.”
Harper is hopeful that the complexity of last season’s defense will be simplified to allow for more organic playmaking opportunities.
“If you’ve got Dallas Turner and Will Anderson, I don’t need to put them in stunts and all this other stuff,” Harper said. “Dude, I just need to green light these dudes and go whup somebody and go make a play.”
Alabama-Middle Tennessee is slated for Sept. 2 at 7:30 p.m. EST and will be televised on SEC Network.