Jahmyr Gibbs: Nick Saban had us practice full pads in the heat, in the NFL they don’t try to kill us
The Lions took running back Jahmyr Gibbs out of Alabama in the first round of the 2023 NFL draft, and after getting a taste for what work is like in the NFL, Gibbs has concluded that it’s easier than at Alabama.
Gibbs was asked to compare an NFL practice with the practices Nick Saban ran at Alabama, and Gibbs said in the NFL the coaches are just trying to help you get better. Saban was trying to drive them to the brink.
“Saban, we’re probably hitting every day. Full pads, in the heat for two hours. Here, we get good work in, but they don’t try to kill us,” Gibbs said.
Gibbs is not the first former Alabama player to opine that practice is easier in the NFL. Saban is known for running a grueling strength and conditioning program and full-contact practices.
NFL players are represented by a union that has negotiated with the NFL about practice rules that limit how much work players are required to do in the offseason, and strictly limit contact in the offseason. College football players have no union and coaches have more freedom to run practices like drill sergeants.