The 2018 version of Alabama boasts the school’s most prolific offense since coach Nick Saban arrived in Tuscaloosa.
The combination of sophomore quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and a talented group of receivers, most of whom are underclassmen, has led to monstrous receiving stats to which there may not be a single historic comparison.
Entering Alabama’s Week 10 matchup at No. 4 LSU, the Crimson Tide’s top five receivers — in terms of receptions — are all averaging more than 17 yards per catch, including two at more than 20 yards per reception.
Each player has at least 20 catches, 400 yards and three receiving touchdowns.
We went through the top-10 passing offenses from every year of this decade to try to find a comparison, and we couldn’t find one that could match the per-catch production of wide receivers Jerry Jeudy, Jaylen Waddle, Henry Ruggs III, DeVonta Smith and tight end Irv Smith Jr.
The scariest news for the rest of the country is that every player in that group, save for Smith, will be back next season.
Here are the receiving statistics for Alabama’s top five receivers through eight games.
|Henry Ruggs III||24||444||18.5||7||3.4|
|Irv Smith Jr.||22||384||17.5||5||4.4|
Here are some of the closest comparisons to Alabama’s 2018 receiving production that we could find from other top-10 passing offenses this decade.
Oklahoma State, 2017
Oklahoma State, 2015
The Crimson Tide still has to play two strong defenses in LSU and Mississippi State, but if Alabama can keep a similar pace through the air in the second half of the season, then there’s a chance that its wide receivers and top tight end will have better yards-per-catch and receptions-per-touchdown averages than any other group of five receivers that have played the sport.