After an entire offseason filled with speculation about who would take on the role of the starting quarterback for Alabama, fans will be able to breathe a sigh of relief Saturday when the Crimson Tide open up the season at home against Middle Tennessee State.

Here are a few things to watch for this Saturday night as the Tide play host to Middle Tennessee State.

  1. Quarterbacks

If there wasn’t a quarterback battle, most Alabama fans would most likely show little interest in Saturday’s game as it is set to be a blowout. A blowout is exactly what Alabama needs so that they can play multiple quarterbacks in live action to determine who will be the future signal caller for the Crimson Tide. Most expect Jalen Milroe to take the first snaps based on his athleticism and having the most experience in an Alabama jersey, but we should expect to see a heavy dose of Ty Simpson as well.

  1. True Freshman Trio

Alabama is expected to have a trio of true freshmen play significant roles this season. Kadyn Proctor is expected to become the first true freshman to start at left tackle for the Crimson Tide since Cam Robinson in 2014. Justice Haynes is expected to be part of a four-man running back rotation and if the Tide get off to a big lead his playing time should increase even more. On the defense side of the ball, Caleb Downs will be starting at one of the two safety positions. Downs might be the most talented freshman on the team with shades of Minkah Fitzpatrick in his gameplay.

  1. Running Backs

Alabama may very well have the deepest running back room in the country. During the offseason, Saban has commented many times that he has four running backs that he feels comfortable handing the ball off to this season. Seniors Jase McClellan and Roydell Williams as well as sophomore Jam Miller and true freshman Justice Haynes. Miller and Haynes, the two young guys, have been the talk of the offseason, making large strides to become the future of the Crimson Tide’s running backs.

  1. New Coordinators

With the addition of two new coordinators, what will this Alabama team’s identity look like? Offensive coordinator Tommy Rees came in from Notre Dame and is expected to run the ball, establishing a dominant run game to open up the passing attack. On the defensive side of the ball, Kevin Steele is expected to bring intensity back to a defense that had its questions last season. Saturday will serve as a good warmup for the two coordinators before a huge matchup against Texas the following week.

  1. Deontae Lawson

Redshirt sophomore Deontae Lawson is taking over the signal-calling duties for the Alabama defense this season. For the past two seasons, the Crimson Tide relied on Henry To’o’o to get them in the right positions. Lawson has loads of talent but only has 11 appearances in his career and little experience calling the plays. Saturday he will have a chance to prove that he is ready to be the next great Alabama middle linebacker as he will have to make fast decisions against a Middle Tennessee State team that likes to play uptempo.

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