When Jameson Williams and John Metchie III left the Tide for the NFL draft this past off season, they left the team with a gaping hole at the wide receiver position.
This issue would not be helped when talented freshman receiver Agiye Hall entered the transfer portal and subsequently left for Texas.
Left with a lack of veteran experience at the receiver position on what appears to be a championship caliber roster, Nick Saban did what he has shown to do quite well in recent years by turning to the transfer portal to find help.
Many believed the Tide's woes were settled when Alabama landed senior wide receiver Jermaine Burton from the 2021 National Champion Georgia Bulldogs, but Saban was not satisfied.
Saban went into the transfer portal, did some digging, and he brought in Jameson Williams 2.0 in Tyler Harrell from the Louisville Cardinals.
Harrell ladies and gentlemen, is going to be the Tides No. 1 weapon in the 2022 season.
Now the numbers don't jump out at you. Harrell hauled in 18 catches for 523 yards and six touchdowns with the Cardinals in 2021 tacking on 90 more yards on four kickoff returns, but it is the physical traits you should be excited about with this guy.
You have heard all about this athlete's speed and rightfully so, he is a blazer. Harrell recorded four touchdowns of 45 or more yards during the 2021 season, including a 92-yard scamper against the University of Virginia
He reportedly last clocked a 4.24 40-yard dash time which ties for 2nd fastest all time at the NFL combine. Just imagining how Bryce Young is going to be able to utilize that speed is enough to make you drool.
However, Harrell is special for more than just his speed. ESPN has Harrell at 6-foot 194 pounds, 20 pounds heavier than last year's world class speedster Jameson Williams. With that added weight adds extra strength and physicality. You see this demonstrated by Harrell's two big plays versus Clemson.
On the first, Harrell, crossing the field, has to stop his momentum, and make the grab on a ball thrown behind him, but it is what Harrell does after the catch that stands out. After the catch Harrell turns his momentum upfield, powering through two arm tackles without slowing and gains nearly 40-yards after contact. A throw and catch that would net most receivers around 15-20 yards Harrell turns into 57.
That, however, would only be the first display of next-level physicality against the Tigers, as in the fourth quarter with the game on the line, Cardinals quarterback Malik Cunningham looks Harrell's way on a 30-yard back shoulder pass. Harrell has to contort his body, turning 180 degrees through the physical play of current Philadelphia Eagle Mario Goodrich in order to make the clutch grab over the corner's outstretched arms.
This is the type of tough and gritty play that the Tide can use to demoralize opposing defenses this upcoming fall, so when the season comes around, keep an eye out for Tyler Harrell. He won't be hard to find.
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