With spring practices starting up for some teams within the next month, projections are starting to roll out for the 2016 season. The latest is ESPN's initial preseason Football Power Index, which you won't be surprised to know that five Southeastern Conference teams landed in the top 10.

The order of the five teams might raise a few eyebrows though. Just a month after claiming the schools fourth national championship in seven seasons, Alabama sits behind two other SEC teams.

Here is how the FPI top 10 looks:

  1. LSU
  2. Florida State
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Clemson
  5. Tennessee
  6. Alabama
  7. Ole Miss
  8. USC
  9. Georgia
  10. Oklahoma State

What can you take away from these rankings other than it's too early? Well, these rankings value returning players, especially starting quarterbacks. Both LSU and Tennessee have the edge there over the Crimson Tide.

Keep in mind, these rankings don't actually predict who will finish the highest, but rather which teams should be the strongest in 2016. Alabama loses some key players but returns the most talented roster from top to bottom and should be back in the mix for the College Football Playoff.

Sign up for the Tide 102.9 newsletter

Get the biggest Alabama news delivered to your inbox.