Alabama lost 2 close games in 2019, falling to eventual national champion LSU and rival Auburn.

The games were tight, but the Alabama defense allowed more points than we’re used to seeing (46 points to LSU and 48 to Auburn).

What was the issue? At the NFL Combine this week, Alabama LB Terrell Lewis blamed a lack of communication and missed signals for the defensive struggles in those games (via

“I just feel like sometimes, especially the LSU game, a lot of times they caught us in a situation where there was a lack of communication and they ended up winning that play and scoring,” Lewis explained. “As a defense, I feel like it was basically too many mental errors as a defense. Same for Auburn. I feel like we had a lot of plays when it didn’t go our way and they caught us when we were at our worst.”

“Communication from the top down, as far as even play calling and as far as just on the field, guys relaying the calls and relaying the signals, stuff like that.”

DC Pete Golding was in his first year at the helm of the Alabama defense last year, and the injury to LB Dylan Moses forced younger linebackers to share the on-field play-calling duties, so those 2 things helped contribute to the communication issues.

We’ll see if coach Nick Saban can get the Tide’s defense in order heading into 2020.