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Alabama Football: Crimson Tide All-Decade Team

Alabama Football: Crimson Tide All-Decade Team

Alabama Football: Crimson Tide All-Decade Team

It may not have ended on a high note, but the Alabama Crimson Tide was unquestionably the best college football program of the decade in the 2010s. Head coach Nick Saban led Alabama to four national championships, winning the 2011 and '12 BCS titles in addition to the College Football Playoff in 2015 and '17. It was the first time a single program won four national championships in a decade since Notre Dame in the 1940s.

The Tide also won five SEC titles (2012, '14, '15, '16, '18), joining the Alabama dynasty of the '70s and the 1990s Florida Gators as the only SEC programs to win at least half the league's championships in a decade. Since 2010, 16 Alabama football players have been unanimous All-Americans, and 10 others were consensus All-Americans. Five were named SEC Offensive Player of the Year, and three were tabbed on defense. At least one Alabama player won the Maxwell, Camp, Walker, Biletnikoff, Butkus, Thorpe, Lombardi, Outland, Bednarik, Nagurski, and Rimington Awards. In 2015, the Crimson Tide won the Joe Moore Award as the nation's best offensive line unit after it paved the way for running back Derrick Henry to win the Heisman Trophy.

Alabama recently completed one of the most dominant decades in college football history, and hundreds of players played a part. The best of the best are recognized here as members of our Alabama All-Decade Team:

QB: Tua Tangovailoa (2017-19)

RB: Derrick Henry (2013-15)

RB: T.J. Yeldon (2012-14)

AP: Trent Richardson (2009-11)

WR: Jerry Jeudy (2017-19)

WR: Amari Cooper (2012-14)

WR: Calvin Ridley (2015-17)

TE: O.J. Howard (2013-17)

C: Ryan Kelly (2012-15)

OL: Cam Robinson (2014-16)

OL: Barrett Jones (2009-12)

OL: Jonah Williams (2016-18)

OL: Chance Warmack (2009-12)

DL: Jonathan Allen (2013-16)

DL: Quinnen Williams (2016-18)

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DL: A'Shawn Robinson (2013-15)

LB: Reuben Foster (2013-16)

LB: Reggie Ragland (2012-14)

LB: C.J. Mosley (2010-13)

LB: Dont'a Hightower (2008-11)

DB: Minkah Fitzpatrick (2015-17)

DB: Landon Collins (2012-14)

DB: Mark Barron (2008-11)

DB: Dee Milliner (2010-12)

K: Jeremy Shelley (2009-12)

P: JK Scott (2014-17)

RS: Jaylen Waddle (2018-Present)

Toughest Position: Defensive Back

More than 40 players earned some type of nationally recognized All-American status at Alabama during the 2010s, meaning our all-decade team excludes more than a dozen players who were considered among the best of the best at their respective positions. Two — Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and Deionte Thompson — were consensus All-American safeties but came up short against a quartet of unanimous selections. Others like Dre Kirkpatrick, DeQuan Menzie, and Marlon Humphrey would have been easy selections at nearly any other school. But the competition was simply too tough to break into our starting secondary.

Deepest Position: Running Back

It's rare that a Heisman Trophy winner doesn't earn a spot on a team's all-decade team. Henry won the Heisman and, as Alabama's all-time leading rusher and co-leader in rushing touchdowns, was a no-brainer for our list. But Mark Ingram II became the first Alabama football player to ever win the Heisman Trophy in 2009. And though he returned to school as a junior in 2010, Ingram was far less productive in his only collegiate season during the last decade, largely splitting carries with Trent Richardson and finishing with 875 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns. As a result, Richardson's two-year rushing total of 2,379 and 27 TDs from 2010-11, boosted by his Doak Walker Award-winning season in '11, as well as his 600-plus receiving yards and seven touchdown receptions, earned him the nod as the all-purpose back ahead of Ingram.

But T.J. Yeldon, who ranks fifth on the Alabama all-time rushing list with 3,322 career yards and ranks fourth with 37 career touchdowns, also is a worthy candidate, as is Eddie Lacy, a member of the elite 30-touchdown club, and Damien Harris, who surpassed 3,000 yards on the ground during his time in Tuscaloosa. Only eight Alabama players have rushed for as many yards or scored as many times. Six have done both, including Henry, Richardson, Yeldon, and Ingram.

Weakest Position: Kicker

Jeremy Shelley was an excellent kicker for Alabama. He was a member of three national championship teams and was a two-time finalist for the Lou Groza Award. As a senior in 2012, he was a perfect 11-for-11 on field goals and converted all 69 extra-point attempts. But he's also the only player on our all-decade team who was not an All-American, and since he graduated, no Alabama kicker has been as consistent or dependable.

— Written by Nicholas Ian Allen, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and managing editor of CFBWinningEdge. Follow him on Twitter @NicholasIAllen.