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Alabama in the Pros

Former Tide DE Isaiah Buggs signs with Nike

Mark J. Rebilas - USA TODAY Sports

He had a strong career at the University of Alabama – which included a national title – he heard his name called in this year’s NFL Draft to the Pittsburgh Steelers and as of Sunday, former Crimson Tide defensive end Isaiah Buggs has now inked a deal with Nike.  

A native of Ruston, La., Buggs is the fourth Tide alumnus to sign with the brand – joining Damien Harris, Josh Jacobs and Jonah Williams.

The 6-foot-3, 306-pounder was selected in the sixth round and prior to that, he led Alabama in sacks (9.5) while having 13.5 tackles for loss last season in helping the program capture its sixth Southeastern Conference title under Nick Saban. 

His financial questions are solved right now with Nike and the $2.68 million (four years) contract; however, the main thing for Buggs is finding ways to contribute as a rookie. 

Pittsburgh has a lot of leadership on its defensive front that includes Cameron Heyward and Stephon Tuitt.

Bud Dupre is expected to be much-improved at outside linebacker and the franchise acquired Mark Barron: an outside linebacker from the Los Angeles Rams. 

RELATED: Redskins Linebacker Reuben Foster Undergoes ACL Surgery


One good thing for Buggs is that Karl Dunbar is the defensive line coach. 

Dunbar was at Alabama from 2015 to 2017 and coached him in his final year. He was in attendance at the Tide’s pro day and saw his future player wreak havoc. With these two back together, one can expect for Buggs to get field time and have a significant impact at some point.  

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 10+ years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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