Since taking over the head coaching job at Alabama in 2007, Nick Saban has always released a depth chart the Monday before the first game. This year, Saban has elected to do things differently, delaying the release of the depth chart until Saturday to prevent any distractions from the game.

"There's a lot of competition on the team," Saban said about his decision. "When we put a depth chart out, you all think that's like final. This is etched in stone. It's going to be this way forevermore. Just because we come out of fall camp and that's where it is. It creates a lot of distractions on our team and guys thinking, 'Well this guy won the job now, and I'm not going to play' or whatever. And quite frankly, we don't need that."

There are many position battles that have yet to be answered ahead of Alabama’s season opener against Middle Tennessee State, but the most intriguing is the battle for the starting quarterback position.

Throughout the offseason, Saban has stressed that the battle will continue past the first game of the season, pleading for one of the quarterbacks to “force us to play you.” Currently, the battle is a three-man race between Jalen Milroe, Ty Simpson and Notre Dame transfer Tyler Buchner.

Saban was asked Monday if he had a plan for multiple quarterbacks for the Crimson Tide’s season opener.

“We’re going one day at a time. We’re repping the players. Even regardless of what happens in this game, it’s the same thing I told you guys before. Just because who starts in the first game doesn't mean you don't have to continue to compete throughout the season because the competition doesn’t end at the first game — at any position, including quarterback.”

Although a starting quarterback was not named, Saban praised Milroe and the amount of improvement he has made so far during the offseason.

“I think Jalen has made a significant amount of improvement,” Saban said. “I think he’s more comfortable in the pocket. He has more confidence in the way he executes and the way he plays. He’s been more consistent in the way he’s played, and I think that’s going to be the key of the drill for him to be able to maintain that consistency in every practice so that he is developing the kind of habits that are going to carry over in the game and help him be successful.”

Alabama will open their season Saturday in Bryant-Denny Stadium at 6:30 p.m. CT against Middle Tennessee State.

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