The Alabama Crimson Tide enter their Week 10 game against the LSU Tigers in a good spot. They were ranked sixth in the initial College Football Rankings on Tuesday, leap-frogging undefeated TCU. But according to Alabama head coach Nick Saban, their offense has been playing ‘left-handed.’
Reigning Heisman Trophy winner, Bryce Young, suffered a shoulder injury against Arkansas last month. He left that game and missed the following week against Texas A&M. Despite returning to play the last couple weeks, he is far from fully healthy. As Saban pointed out Wednesday night, that has made it impossible to assess this Alabama offense.
“I don’t think it’s really fair to assess anything that the offense has done, because we’ve been a little bit left-handed ever since Bryce got hurt in the Arkansas game,” Saban said. “He basically hasn’t been able to practice for however many weeks — three weeks — and played pretty well in two games.”
It’s difficult to grow and build continuity on offense when your leader is unable to practice every week. Nevertheless, Alabama has continued to play well. Even in their 52-49 loss to Tennessee, Young and the Crimson Tide offense rolled, pun intended. As more time passes, Young’s shoulder should continue to heal. That should be scary for the rest of college football.
Alabama travels to Baton Rouge to face the 10th ranked LSU Tigers. The following week they travel to Ole Miss, ranked 11th in the nation. So, the road is not easy ahead but if Alabama can find a way to win those games, they will find themselves with a shot at the College Football Playoff once again.