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Nick Saban calls Washington’s secondary ‘Seattle Seahawk-like’

The Bama head man was very complimentary of his opponent.

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NCAA Football: SEC Championship-Alabama vs Florida Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Alabama arrived in Atlanta for Peach Bowl prep and Nick Saban was very complimentary of Washington.

You can skip to 16:15 in that video to hear him say it, but the full quote after he’s asked what he’s seen on tape of Washington’s secondary is:

“They’re very good, they have length at corner, they’re very good cover guys. I think the scheme that they play, they don’t make a lot of mistakes. They’re sort of a little bit Seattle Seahawk-like in the fact that we’re gonna do what we do and we’re gonna do it really well. They do a great job of executing the things that they play. They do a great job of breaking on the ball.”

Saban’s not necessarily saying the teams are the same scheme wise, but what he’s getting at is that Washington and Seattle have a certain style of play that they don’t deviate from.

There are certainly other similarities to draw between the two Seattle football teams, though, beyond the fact that they’re located in the same city. Safeties Earl Thomas and Budda Baker each are the cornerstones of their respective secondaries and, by extension, their entire defensive units. Coaches Chris Petersen and Pete Carroll are also part of the crusade to make the game safer. The Seahawks have been pioneers of bringing rugby tackling to American football.

Petersen has put the technique in practice with the Huskies as well.

Huskies coach Chris Petersen is trying to save not only his players by introducing the new tackling technique but also the game in an era of increased awareness of concussions and CTE.

“Coach Pete had the vision that football needs to change,” Lake said. “It has to change, or else everyone’s going to be playing another sport in 20 years. And the NCAA did a great job where if you lead with your head or go to the neck/shoulder area, you’re out of the game. Well, it’s not like our rosters are just full of guys that we can interchange. And so it really forced our hand that we had to do something.”

Saban played defensive back in college and coached it at numerous stops on the college and pro levels. He is one of the pioneers of pattern-matching zone defense in pass coverage, so when he speaks about DBs and DB play he’s got more than a little authority.