Alabama Football News

Roman Harper, SEC Network analyst and former Alabama safety, said Mac Jones is the ‘biggest surprise’ in the SEC this season

Mac Jones signals the offense against Tennessee
Photo by Kent Gidley of Alabama Athletics/SEC Media Portal

Roman Harper is not the only one pleasantly surprised by Mac Jones’ performance this year.

As a former Alabama safety and Super Bowl champion, Harper is now a member of the ESPN family with SEC Network. He played for the Crimson Tide from 2002 to 2005 — prior to getting drafted to the National Football League — but when it comes to the Tide’s offense, he chose a player he felt has been the ‘biggest surprise’ in the Southeastern Conference.

Jones was No. 1 on Harper’s top-five list.

Before the season started, there were a lot of doubters who questioned his ability to run this offense. He played well in filling in for an injured Tua Tagovailoa last year; however, people were skeptical of the marriage between Jones and Steve Sarkisian.

Through six games, the junior has made a believer out of everyone and Alabama is undefeated.

RELATED: Alabama football midseason position grades: Quarterbacks

He has Alabama with the SEC’s top-ranked scoring offense (47.2 ppg) and total offense (555.2 ypg), while it carries the nation’s top-ranked scoring offense and No. 3 total offense.

Behind Jones, the Tide has scored at least 40 points in five straight matchups. He’s paced the offensive unit to a pair of wins over top-10 schools and dropped 41 points on a Georgia program that has a top-5 defense in all of college football. A native of Jacksonville, Fla., Jones is the only quarterback in Alabama history with three straight 400-yard passing games.

He ranks first in the SEC for completion percentage (78.5), passing yards (2,196), passer rating (210.32) and total quarterback rating (95.5), while having 16 touchdown passes.

Jones has been the reason behind Alabama’s offensive balance and he is new leader in the Heisman Trophy race.

With a meeting against LSU next week, Jones is set to continue the Tide’s push for a conference title and College Football Playoff opportunity.

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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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