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The NFL Draft may be a Bama versus Bama fight for the number one pick

Alabama Football NFL Draft
Vasha Hunt/AP
FR171624 AP
Alabama linebacker Will Anderson Jr. and quarterback Bryce Young wait to step to the podium as Alabama juniors declared for the NFL draft, Monday, Jan. 2, 2023, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Anders, Young and running back Jahmyr Gibbs all declared for the draft. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)

It’s been one week since the first three Alabama players declared for the NFL draft. And, the fight to be the number one pick may involve teammates on the Crimson Tide. Mock drafts list both quarterback Bryce Young and defensive linebacker Will Anderson as being the first pick among NFL teams. Young says he and Anderson have played as teammates since their freshman years, so it’s strange to be competitors…

“It’s a blessing and all glory to God,” said Young. “And to be so highly regarded, it’s a reflection for me and Will, it’s a reflection of the program, a reflection for Coach Saban, and the foundation he’s laid for us at the program here.”

Tide kicker Will Reichard announced for the NFL draft but changed his mind. Safety Brian Branch, Defensive backs Eli Ricks and Jordan Battle, and linebacker Henry To’o To’o declared for the draft. This group joined quarterback Bryce Young, linebacker Will Anderson, and running back Jahmyr Gibbs who declared earlier this week. Bryce Young also addressed another concern as he makes his move to the NFL He says he knows what his message is going to be when they face each other as members of opposing teams…

“Please take it easy. Remember all the good times we had. I’ll probably call him and send him pictures of us in freshman year together and take it easy. That’s probably what my approach will be.”

CBS Sports is among the media outlets predicting Bryce Young as the number one pick to the Houston Texans. Will Anderson occupies the number two slot with the Chicago Bears, and cornerback Brian Branch being picked by the Green Bay Packers at number sixteen. Those are the only Alabama players CBS has going in the first round of its mock draft.

Pat Duggins is news director for Alabama Public Radio.
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