Last week in Atlanta against Duke was Trevon Diggs' first game action since Oct. 6 last season.
He sure didn't play like it.
The Crimson Tide senior had a fumble recovery and an interception in a 42-3 rout of the Blue Devils.
Diggs was having a stellar 2018 season when he went down with a broken foot against Arkansas. In that game he had a career-high seven tackles with a pass breakup. Though he played just six games that season, Diggs tied for fourth in the SEC in passes defended (seven), and broke up a team-high six passes with 20 tackles, an interception and a forced fumble.
"It felt really good to be back out on the field with my teammates, my brothers," Diggs said. "I hadn't played in a while, so it was a blessing to be out there."
Despite the big plays he made in the season opener, it's the one play he didn't make that bothers him. It was just before halftime when Duke quarterback Quentin Harris went deep to Scott Bracey. Diggs turned, found the ball and tried to swat it away but came up empty as Bracey made the tough catch for a 37-yard gain to the Alabama 36-yard line.
"Me giving up the play, that sticks out most in my mind," Diggs said. "In my head I'm like, 'You have to go make up for it.' When you are playing the position, balls are going to get caught. You just have to forget about it, but I use it as motivation to make plays."
"I gave up a pass the first time by not playing the ball. (On the interception) I was like, 'Play the ball.' I started to get a feel of things, and I turned my head and caught the ball."
Overall, Diggs said he thinks the Crimson Tide secondary did well in the first game. There were the normal missed assignments and mistakes that accompany every initial game, but it was a decent first outing.
Diggs credits that to the time he and the other defensive backs have spent bonding in the offseason and during preseason camp.
"We've gotten very close over the time we've had at camp," he said. "Everyone is communicating and everyone is on the same page."
There was a stretch during the first quarter against Duke where no one was on the same page. The Blue Devils came out running a flexbone offense and threw Alabama off. It was an offensive scheme the Crimson Tide saw last year, and they regrouped once the defense figured out what was happening.
"We just had to make our adjustments. (Duke) saw some things that The Citadel did on us (last year) and it was working, so I guess they wanted to try that," Diggs said. "I didn't recognize it until I went back to the sideline and Raekwon (Davis) said something. I didn't really see what was going on because I was locked in on my man. We just made our adjustments and moved on."
Reach Edwin Stanton at 205-722-0226, email@example.com or viat Twitter, @edwinstantonu2