TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Two Alabama starters missed practice on Wednesday while another continued to work his way back from injury.
Crimson Tide defensive linemen Da’Shawn Hand and Dalvin Tomlinson were noticeably absent during the media’s viewing period of practice on Wednesday. For the first time this spring, Tide safety Eddie Jackson (leg) wore a regular Crimson defensive jersey. Jackson had previously worn a black, non-contact jersey while participating in drills.
“We got a few guys that are nicked up,” Tide coach Nick Saban said Wednesday. “Da’Shawn Hand had back spasms today. He was out to practice early, and then went in. Dalvin Tomlinson is sick. We are getting Eddie Jackson back out there. He’s starting to do some stuff so that’s good for him.”
Both Hand and Tomlinson have served as the defensive ends with the Tide’s first-team defense with rising sophomore Daron Payne playing defensive tackle. As for Jackson, he was back with the first-team defense when the Tide worked on its nickel package on Wednesday. Jackson appeared to be moving fine during the brief viewing window.
As a sophomore last season, Hand had 16 tackles including 6.5 tackles for loss and three sacks. Tomlinson posted 34 tackles, and led the defensive linemen with six batted balls. Both are expected to play bigger roles this season with A’Shawn Robinson, Jarran Reed and others moving on.
Jackson had 46 tackles and tied for the SEC lead with six interceptions as a junior last season.
Saban also provided an update on offensive lineman Richie Petitbon. Petitbon, who redshirted last season, suffered a knee injury during the Tide’s scrimmage on Saturday. Petitbon showed promise this spring, and was on track to push for a role along the offensive line prior to his injury.
“Everything went really well so we expect a full recovery from him,” Saban said of Petitbon.