A second Alabama football player has voiced his opinion of Mac Jones.
One topic that will not go away this season is the quarterback conversation between Jones and Bryce Young.
Young, a five-star true freshman, has looked impressive at fall camp. Whether it has been videos from the Alabama Athletics Department, Steve Sarkisian in a press conference, or other players speaking in interviews, the buzz on campus is Young has adjusted quickly to the offense. He still has to pick up on a lot of little things, but the alumnus of Mater Dei High School and 2019 Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of California is the one of whom many Crimson Tide fans want to see start.
When it comes to Jones, the redshirt junior always has something to prove.
He was a high school state champion in 2016 and competed at the Elite 11; however, he was overshadowed by Tua Tagovailoa in Alabama’s 2017 signing class. Although his early success came in spring games, Jones got a huge opportunity last season to prove he can run the offense. Injuries to Tagovailoa led to Jones making moves as a starter versus Arkansas, Auburn and Michigan. Despite the nerves he had against Tennessee, he compiled 897 passing yards with 10 touchdowns to two interceptions in three of his four starts. Alabama’s offense did not miss at beat, as it remained with the nation’s No. 2 scoring offense (47.2 ppg), No. 3 passing offense (342.2 ypg) and No. 6 total offense (510.8 ypg) with Jones under center.
The 6-foot-3, 214-pounder sees the attention Young is getting, yet it does not bother him.
Jones did not arrive to fan fare on campus.
He put his head down and his work ethic spoke for him. From running scout team to this moment, players on the team have big respect for Jones. After hearing Jaylen Waddle speak on him last week, Alex Leatherwood echoed Jones’ leadership on Wednesday.
“Mac has always been a workhorse,” Leatherwood said. “Ever since he came on campus, he has been one of the hardest workers. I feel like it has been consistent with him coming into this fall camp. He works his ass off and he’s a great team player and leader for our team.”
Leatherwood, like Jones, is a native Floridian who arrived in 2017 to the Crimson Tide.
He has seen Jones’ growth from the beginning and anticipates a big year from him. Even with having a tougher schedule (conference-only) and playing in the Coronavirus pandemic, players feel like Jones can give this year the best chance at winning a national championship.
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