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Alabama ILB Dylan Moses tears ACL shaking up 2020 NFL Draft outlook

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Horrible news out of Tuscaloose as the Tide get set to open their season against Duke in Atlanta on Saturday.

Alabama LB Dylan Moses tackles Georgia TE Charlie Woerner in the SEC Championship, Dec. 1, 2018.
Alabama LB Dylan Moses tackles Georgia TE Charlie Woerner in the SEC Championship, Dec. 1, 2018.
Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Ugh. Knees. Can’t stand without ‘em (literally).

Yet again, a flashpoint in the age old War on Knees has flared up as it claims yet another victim.

This time, it’s Alabama Crimson Tide true junior ILB Dylan Moses who tore his ACL in practice yesterday with the Tide getting ready to open their season against Duke in Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta:

For the Tide, it’s a very, very unwelcome loss given (a) how fantastic Moses is but also (b) how thin they are at the position.

Josh McMillon was lost for the year just two weeks ago when he also suffered a knee injury. Freshman Christian Harris, who is a likely starter, has had a brace on his knee and skipped some drills in recent practices. Christopher Allen tore his ACL before the 2018 season but should be healthy. Terrell Lewis also tore his ACL prior to last year; he’ll miss the first half against Duke due to suspension.

So yes. A couple of issues at linebacker for Head Coach Nick Saban to work through...

As for the 2020 NFL Draft, Moses’ injury could make things interesting at inside linebacker if he decides to declare. Moses was the only true inside linebacker in Dan Kadar’s initial 2020 mock over at Mocking the Draft going 7th overall. In his positional rankings (ESPN+ subscription required), ESPN’s Mel Kiper, Jr., had Moses ranked as his top underclass inside linebacker. Suffice to say, this shakes things up.

Should Moses declare, he’d go through the draft process just six months from now. That would likely rule out most physical work at the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine next February as well as at Bama’s pro day. How much will that affect his draft stock? He’d be able to play his rookie season, so it’s not similar to the slide that Dallas Cowboys LB Jaylon Smith suffered when he injured his knee in his final game for Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl ruling out any action in his rookie NFL season in 2016. Smith slid all the way to 34th overall as the second pick in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft despite being a consensus top-16 or so pick prior to the injury. Smith has since established himself as one of the league’s best young linebackers earning a hefty contract extension last week.

Could Moses slide to the Rams in the first-round of the 2020 draft? Would they consider him coming off the injury? We’ll have to see.

Today though, it’s just unfortunate for Moses and for fans who would have been able to see one of the college level’s best linebackers hone his craft as Bama gears up for another run toward the college football playoffs.