12 October 2010
The Alabama football team went back to work in full pads on Tuesday. Apparently Monday's practice mostly consisted of meetings and a walk-through, but Tuesday saw things get back to normal in preparation for Ole Miss and Homecoming this Saturday.
Here's what you need to know:
Julio Jones was in a black no contact jersey, but he did participate in individual drills. While no balls were thrown his way during the media viewing period, other players indicated that he did more after the initial groupings. I still think it's a bit optimistic to expect him to play on Saturday, but it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest. Don't expect to see him on special teams, though.
D.J. Fluker was also in black, and still looks doubtful for Saturday. It looks like Alfred McCullough will get the nod at right tackle with either Tyler Love or John Michael Boswell getting the backup job. I expect we won't see Fluker again until the LSU game.
Courtney Upshaw (ankle) and Chris Jordan (hamstring) have both been cleared for contact, but both guys continue to be limited in practice. Upshaw has played through the ankle pain since week one, but you have to wonder at what point he'll need to shut it down for a few weeks in order to get healthy.
With Jordan still struggling, Nico Johnson has put a stranglehold on the will linebacker spot. We will still see C.J. Mosley as the mack linebacker in the nickel and dime packages, but Johnson looks to have firmly placed himself into a role in Bama's base defense.
There does not appear to be a hangover after the loss for this group. They have practiced with good focus and intensity, despite losing for the first time in over a season. It will be crucial in the next few weeks for some leaders to emerge, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Thankfully there are several candidates.
Bama will practice again on Wednesday, and we'll have our normal report.
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