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Along with Amari Cooper, AJ McCarron will join the Tide's list of less-effective players in 2013. It's not his skill level that will hurt him; he will return more skilled than ever in 2013.
What's going to hurt him is losing two first-round draft picks during the offseason and a second-round pick, all from the offensive line. Chance Warmack, D.J. Fluker and Barrett Jones are all leaving The Capstone this spring.
Warmack and Jones are both ranked No. 1 at their respective positions, and Fluker is ranked No. 4 at his. With 60 percent of their starting offensive line gone, McCarron's numbers will undoubtedly be affected.
Sure, he may still find a way to win his third-straight national championship, but his numbers will not be the same.
He finished the season as the nation's leader in quarterback rating, and that was largely due to his protection in the pocket. With that protection gone, he will be sacked more often and forced to throw under pressure.
McCarron's ceiling may be sky-high, but the walls could come crashing in. This is especially true if the new starters don't figure out what to do by the time Alabama plays Texas A&M. That game is on the schedule in Week 3.
Stat line from 2012: 211-of-314 for 2,933 yards, 30 touchdowns and three interceptions with a QBR of 175.3.