Miami could put Alabama on upset watch with healthy D’Eriq King per PFF

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - SEPTEMBER 19: (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - SEPTEMBER 19: (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

The Miami football team could put Alabama on upset watch if D’Eriq King is healthy per Anthony Treash of Pro Football Focus. Miami was 8-3 in 2020. Alabama finished 13-0 and won the 2020 National Championship. The Crimson Tide earned their second undefeated season under head coach Nick Saban and first since 2009.

The Crimson Tide has won six National Championships during the Saban era. Miami has five National Championships in their history. The return of D’Eriq King at quarterback was a huge boost for Miami. King announced his return a few days before Miami lost 37-34 to Oklahoma State in the 2020 Cheez-It Bowl.

King suffered a torn ACL in the loss to the Cowboys. Recovery from a torn ACL is usually eight to 12 months. King has smashed his milestones in rehab according to the Miami coaching staff. In 2020, King completed 64.1 percent of his passes for 2,686 passing yards with 23 touchdowns and five interceptions.

King added 538 rushing yards and four TDs. The Miami up-tempo spread offense should be improved in its second season led by King and coordinator Rhett Lashlee. The Miami offense faces a huge challenge against Alabama in the season opener. The Crimson Tide was 13th in scoring defense in 2020 allowing 19.4 points per game.

Miami should be able to move the ball on the Alabama defense. Alabama was 32nd in total defense in 2020 allowing 352.2 yards per game. Miami was 26th in scoring offense in 2020 averaging 34 PPG. The Hurricanes were 32nd in total offense averaging 439.8 yards per game.

According to Bama Online, the 247 Sports Alabama site, the Crimson Tide is returning nine starters on defense. The bigger question for Miami is will they be able to stop the Alabama offense. Playing Alabama in the season opener might benefit Miami. Bryce Young will be making his first career start for Alabama versus Miami.

Bama Online reported that only three starters are returning on the Alabama offense. Miami has 10 starters returning on offense and nine on defense. The biggest question marks for Miami against Alabama will be how well they handle the Crimson Tide passing game. Miami has to generate a pass rush.

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The Hurricanes lost star edge rushers Jaelan Phillips and Quincy Roche following the 2020 season. Replacing Phillips and Roche and getting more consistent play from their secondary in coverage will be critical for Miami in 2021. Alabama is the biggest challenge Miami will have in 2021. Miami can learn from playing Alabama.