Alabama enters the College Football Playoff with the chance to cement a legacy not only as back-to-back champions, but one of the great teams in college football history.
We continue our countdown of the top 10 players who got Alabama to this point. With Alabama’s talent, any number of players could make this list. Give us your own on Twitter or our Alabama Insiders Facebook page.
No. 3 DB Minkah Fitzpatrick
Why he’s here: How could he not be? Minkah Fitzpatrick has done a little bit of everything for the Crimson Tide this season and done it all very well. He started the season at corner and has played star and strong safety since Eddie Jackson was lost for the season. He’s fourth on the team in tackles with 56 and leads with five interceptions.
His first game at safety came against LSU and he intercepted a Danny Etling pass in the fourth quarter that led to a field goal and final 10-point margin of victory.
Then there was the game. You know the one. Against Arkansas, Fitzpatrick picked off three Austin Allen passes — all in the second half. The first was in the third quarter when he intercepted Allen at the Arkansas 18. Alabama scored a touchdown four players later. On the Razorbacks’ next drive Fitzpatrick intercepted Allen again and returned it 14 yards. Two Arkansas possessions later, Fitzpatrick completed the hat trick when he stepped in front of another Allen pass in the end zone and took it back 100 yards for a touchdown.
Minkah Fitzpatrick | #TheOpening CFB Alum POW Candidate
— The Opening (@TheOpening) October 11, 2016
He didn’t stop there. He had 4 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and a 44-yard interception return for a touchdown in Alabama’s 54-16 win against Florida in the SEC Championship Game.
— Kyle Burger (@kyle_burger) December 3, 2016
What’s ahead in 2017
Fitzpatrick returns in 2017 as one of the leaders of the Alabama defense. With Ronnie Harrison and Anthony Averett, the Crimson Tide will have plenty of playmakers in the secondary. He’s already being projected as a first round selection in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Alabama Top 10 players
No. 10: DB Anthony Averett
No. 9: LT Cam Robinson
No. 8: FS Ronnie Harrison
No. 7: OLB Tim Williams
No. 6: LB Ryan Anderson
No. 5: WR ArDarius Stewart
No. 4: QB Jalen Hurts
No. 3: DB Minkah Fitzpatrick