SEC Football:  The West’s Most Important Defensive Players in 2015

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Oct 25, 2014; Knoxville, TN, USA; Tennessee Volunteers quarterback Joshua Dobbs (11) fumbles the ball as he is hit by Alabama Crimson Tide linebacker Reggie Ragland (19) during the first half game at Neyland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

If Alabama has a face in 2015, it would be tough to name him.  Many would say Derrick Henry.  Others would say A’Shawn Robinson.  I’ll go with Reggie Ragland as the face and the most important player on the whole team in 2015.

Under Saban and Smart, a dominant linebacker has become a tradition for Alabama.  Ragland not only filled the role in 2014, but must also fill it in 2015.  With the losses the Tide’s offense must replace from 2014, Ragland’s play will be particularly vital in the beginning of 2015.

If he can improve on his 95 tackles, 10.5 of which were for loss, and intercept a few passes, Alabama will be able to transition their offense much more smoothly.  With Ragland leading the defense and the offense having time to adjust, Alabama would be a contender for a College Football Playoff seed once again.

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