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There is an elite talent gap among CFB Playoff teams

Alabama football has a considerable advantage in elite talent among the CFB Playoff teams, measured by projected NFL first-round picks.

Alabama football fans, before we jump to irrational exuberance, some disclaimers are in order. Football games are not won just by select groups of elite players. As Bear Bryant was prone to say, “eleven men just doing their job and giving it a little bit extra.” Only Bryant pronounced the “extra” more like extry. The point being is the offense, defense and special teams units, with all the rotational and situational backups, must all do their jobs for teams to achieve greatness.

The opposite of that perspective is the understanding games often come down to who performs best on a handful of plays. The handful of plays can never be predicted in advance. The players who rise to great challenge are not always elite players. More often than not, they are the most exceptional players in any given game.

Players ‘doing their job’ and exceptional players executing feats of greatness are both valid constructs. And chance favors the team with the most talented players. Which explains why Nick Saban is an obsessively driven recruiting demon.

Talent can be measured in several ways. The ranking of recruiting classes is one. Another is post-season player awards. An additional measurement tool is the NFL Draft. Even with last year’s slip, Alabama football has dominated the last four signing classes. As we discussed yesterday, Alabama football is kicking ass in All-America honors with a new AFCA All-America Team record.

Today, we will compare 2019 NFL Mock Drafts and players on the four CFB Playoff teams. Quick preview – the Alabama Crimson Tide is dominating here as well.

It is too early to go into details of predicted picks for any player. Except maybe for Nick Bosa, the former Ohio State Buckeye most prognosticators have as the No. pick overall. For the purpose of comparing the CFB Playoff teams, players projected as first-round picks is enough.

Alabama football has six guys and maybe one more predicted to be drafted in the first round. They are Jonah Williams, Quinnen Williams, Deionte Thompson, Mack Wilson, Irv Smith Jr., Raekwon Davis and Damien Harris.

Clemson has three, all on the defensive line, Clelin Ferrell, Christian Wilkins and Dexter Lawrence. Oklahoma also has three. For the Sooners, they are WR, Marquise Brown and offensive linemen, Cody Ford and Ben Powers. Both Ford and Powers could also be considered in the maybe category.

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have one player. He is defensive tackle, Jerry Tillery, who also is a maybe.

While it is true, not-draft-eligible players can also influence the outcome of Playoff games, Alabama football has a decided advantage with experienced, elite player numbers. The other three teams, particularly Notre Dame, have not so much.

Next: Elite recruits should pay close attention.

Alabama football fans, keep a close watch on Bama Hammer. We will continue presenting solid information guaranteed to draw the ire of Sooner, Tigers and Irish fans.

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