TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama football wide receiver ArDarius Stewart announced his plan to enter the NFL Draft on Friday.
The deadline for underclassmen to declare for the draft is Jan. 16.
Stewart, a two-year starter at wide receiver, departs Alabama after his redshirt junior season. The former 4-star prospect leaves Tuscaloosa having won three SEC championships and one national championship.
He finished the season with 54 receptions for 864 yards and 8 touchdowns, leading the team in receiving yards and receiving touchdowns despite missing 3 games. Stewart exploded against Mississippi State and Auburn, combining for 18 catches for 283 yards and 4 touchdowns in those games.
Stewart caught 63 passes for 700 yards and 4 touchdowns as a redshirt sophomore on Alabama’s 2015 national championship team.
A versatile weapon for Alabama’s offense, Stewart took handoffs, ran deep and occasionally threw the ball. His best attribute may be his physical play, particularly as a blocker. Stewart approached the game with the mentality of a defensive player.
He also returned kicks, which should help his chances of being drafted and sticking with an NFL team.
Potential replacements for ArDarius Stewart
Losing Stewart hurts. There’s no replacing his blocking ability and physical play.
Calvin Ridley returns for his junior season. Cam Sims and Trevon Diggs are both ready for bigger roles. T.J. Simmons and Derek Kief will be fighting for playing time.
Jerry Jeudy and Tyrell Shavers are early enrollees who could compete for playing time in the fall.