Alabama football’s 2021 NFL Draft output was out of this world, tying Miami’s 2004 record for the most first-round picks from a single school.
If sometimes it feels like Alabama could field a team in the NFL all by themselves, it’s probably because they’ve gone crazy producing draft picks under Nick Saban.
In the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Crimson Tide matched Miami’s all-time record from 2004 with six selections. The names included Jaylen Waddle, Patrick Surtain, DeVonta Smith, Mac Jones, Alex Leatherwood and Najee Harris.
It all started with Waddle at No. 5 overall to the Miami Dolphins. That selection reunited him with former Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.
Given just how many Crimson Tide players litter NFL rosters, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that there was another reunion to come when the Eagles grabbed Smith with the No. 10 pick. He’ll catch passes from Jalen Hurts again in the NFL.
Before that, the Broncos made it three Top 10 selections for Alabama by taking Surtain with the No. 9 pick.
Alabama had a huge first round in the 2021 NFL Draft
The next Saban product came off the board at No. 15 as Jones fell to the Patriots. He might have slipped, but he might be the big winner of the draft landing in such a favorable situation.
Two selections later, Leatherwood represented the big men in the trenches as the Raiders’ pick at No. 17.
Alabama tied the record when the Steelers drafted Najee Harris with the 24th pick.
Ohio State still owns the record for most overall first-round picks, followed by USC. Alabama had 68 coming into 2021, just one behind Notre Dame. They passed them with ease.
With a surge of picks each year, the Crimson Tide are not playing around when it comes to catching up to those NFL Draft factories. They’re not far from challenging the Buckeyes.
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