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Alabama Football Impact Players

Has Jalen Milroe been the driving force behind Alabama’s offensive turnaround?

John David Mercer - USA Today Sports

Alabama held the No. 1 overall pick of the 2023 NFL Draft as its starting quarterback for two seasons; however, the Crimson Tide did not have the team chemistry it has now.

Jalen Milroe is not Bryce Young, but he has led his team to an opportunity to play for a Southeastern Conference Championship and a College Football Playoff shot. It has not been pretty, yet the team remained behind Milroe as its quarterback.

RELATED: Jalen Milroe heard yelling “Give me the Heisman” after late win over Auburn

He got benched in week three of the college football season, but the sophomore’s maturity to support Tyler Buchner and Ty Simpson won him the starting job back for the remainder of the year. The native Texan has grown confidently with Tommy Rees as Alabama’s offensive coordinator. Milroe and Rees turned in 42 points versus LSU, 49 points against Kentucky, and 66 points against Chattanooga before a “Fourth & 31” miracle happened at Jordan-Hare Stadium to earn a 27-24 victory over Auburn.

Milroe stands eighth in school history for total touchdowns in a single season (33) and is a finalist for the Manning Award. 

On Thursday, Nick Saban highlighted Milroe as the driving force behind the offensive improvement for the Tide during his SEC Championship webinar presser.

“I think our team has improved dramatically in confidence,” Saban said. “We are playing together, we have good leadership, but if you had to say where we improve the most … I would say it’s probably offensively. The transformation of Jalen Milroe at quarterback to be productive has been huge in elevating the confidence of the offensive team.”

Saban said Milroe’s confidence has elevated the offensive line and wide receivers to play better. Alabama has played with more confidence as a whole, but Milroe has its offense rolling. He has not reached 3,000 yards passing, but he does have four matchups where he completed 70 percent or higher of his passes. Milroe has eight games with 2+ touchdown passes and is seventh in the nation among quarterbacks with an 84.4 quarterback rating. He has a passer rating of 179.6, which is third in the nation.

Milroe leads the Crimson Tide against Georgia on Saturday for SEC Championship supremacy. 

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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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