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Mac Jones proves he’s the man for the Tide after a strong start to the season

Mac Jones in warmups before game versus Missouri
Denny Medley - USA TODAY Sports

The era of Alabama football without Tua Tagovailoa is off to a hot start.

Despite all the doubt thrown in his direction before Saturday’s game, Mac Jones took the stage against Missouri at Faurot Field and made the ultimate statement to his critics in a 38-19 win for the Crimson Tide. He waited his time and the redshirt junior showed he is the man at quarterback for this program. With the guidance of Steve Sarkisian dialing up plays, Jones attacked the Tigers’ defensive secondary for strong numbers. He accounted for 249 passing yards with two touchdowns and no turnovers.

Even when the Tigers brought pressure, the former four-star was highly efficient.

RELATED: Mac Jones, Alabama football open 2020 season with a win over Missouri

Jones completed 18 of 24 passes (75 percent) and connected with six different receivers — including Jaylen Waddle, who was on the receiving end of both scoring tosses.

The 6-foot-3, 214-pounder guided Alabama to 414 yards offensively and nine third down conversions on 14 attempts. Jones moved the chains on four third down tries, with two resulting in scores to Waddle.

He had a 22-yard completion to John Metchie (two catches, 42 yards) and got another first down with his legs. Jones pushed the Tide to a 28-3 lead at halftime and allowed Bryce Young to take over late in the third quarter.

Nick Saban was pleased with how the offense performed in the first half, especially seeing Jones share the wealth. After playing well down the stretch of 2019, the native Floridian starts this campaign with a bang. Jones and Alabama will host Texas A&M next week at Bryant-Denny Stadium for its home opener.

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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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