The Alabama Crimson Tide is a perennial college football powerhouse — and defending national champion — that’s become something similar to NFL’s 33rd team at this point. The number of elite pro prospects produced by coach Nick Saban is unrivaled in recent years.
Alabama tied the all-time NFL draft record for the most first-rounders in 2021 with six, and in the 2022 NFL draft, they could come close to matching that number.
In PFN’s latest 2022 mock draft, the Crimson Tide are represented by four players in Round 1: Christian Harris (LB) at No. 7 overall, Evan Neal (OT) at No. 13 overall, Jordan Battle (SAF) at No. 17 overall), and John Metchie III (WR) at No. 28 overall.
Jones and Neal feel like the surest things on this list. Neal is an especially safe projection as a first-rounder because of the quality of his tape combined with the value placed on offensive tackles as early first-round prospects. The other guys — Harris, Battle, and Metchie — aren’t in that same tier either because of their positional value or lack of true first-round tape at this point.
That doesn’t mean they won’t get there, however. Mac Jones wasn’t a first-round quarterback when the 2020 season started; he was the 15th overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft.
One thing we know for sure is that Alabama will produce multiple first-rounders. Whether it’s these four prospects or an entirely different batch of names, the Crimson Tide will be well-represented in the first 32 selections next April.