Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

Alabama Offensive Linemen Getting Looks at Different Spots

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

Alabama Offensive Linemen Getting Looks at Different Spots

Article excerpt

By Aaron Suttles

Sports Writer

One of the benefits of early camp practices is the time it affords coaches to get looks at different

players at different positions, and through the first seven team practices that's certainly been the case on the offensive line.

One of the more intriguing spots is right guard, where a number of linemen are working or have worked through the first six days of camp.

Senior Leon Brown was the starting right guard for the Sugar Bowl, but a foot injury derailed the start of his camp. UA coach Nick Saban expects him to be limited for two weeks.

Alphonse Taylor has practiced on both the right and left side of the line, but at the moment seems to be working more on the right.

Behind him is junior college transfer Dominick Jackson, a 6-foot- 7, 320-pounder, who has worked at right guard and also at tackle.

Starting center Ryan Kelly said both Taylor and Jackson are progressing.

"(Taylor's) come miles," Kelly said. "He's done a great job. He's a really flexible guy. He's a big guy, too, so even in the running game he can finish some guys off.

"(Jackson's) a big dude. He's just like Shank (Taylor), those big behemoth guys. He can move in space and move well. Coming from a wing-T you don't do a lot of pass protection, so that's one thing he has to work on. We've all been working on that every day. No one is perfect. He's got a great attitude toward what he does. As long as he brings that every day he's going to fine."

Jackson played in a junior college offense that primarily ran the ball. Now he's being tasked with

fine-tuning his pass protection on top of acclimating into the way the Alabama football program operates.

"I think his pass protection is pretty good, because every time I've gone against him it's pretty tough to get around him and play my keys and everything," defensive lineman Dalvin Tomlinson said.

Bring the rush

Alabama defenders aren't shying away from expectations of an increased pass rush in 2014. They're welcoming it.

From defensive line coach Bo Davis down to the players, the desire is to get after the quarterback this season.

"Coach Bo Davis has done a really good job with the D-line. …

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