The Star Democrat

Alabama peaking despite its flaws

- BY JOHN ZENOR

Down to the last play of the regular season, this Alabama team managed to bounce off the ropes when it seemed most vulnerable.

It is unlike some previous Nick Saban powerhouse­s that have been seemingly destined for the national title game — barring a shocker along the way — from start to finish.

The 2020 team batted aside every opponent during the regular season with a seemingly unstoppabl­e offense.

The 2011 defense was equally formidable, even in a regular season slipup against LSU (losing 9-6 in overtime). The 2009 team, like last season’s, was unbeaten.

It wasn’t always clear how good the 2021 version would end up becoming.

This team was flawed and seemingly vulnerable — at least until the Southeaste­rn Conference championsh­ip game against No. 1 Georgia. But Bulldogs seemed to have claimed the

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