Then he got hurt early in the exhibition season, tried to come back with the use of a harness on his shoulder, but just didn’t seem the same. From House’s ashes rose one Casey Hayward, who moved into the defensive backfield and nearly earned the title of rookie defensive player of the year.
So, what now about House?
Well, if you listen to his recent interview published across the inter web, he’s more than ready to pick up where he left off last season. In fact, confidence pours from his recently-published words:
“To me, if you think I did good last year then you have a whole other thing coming. I won’t have this harness on so it won’t slow me down. So what you saw in the preseason, Week One, there’s going to be a lot of that.”
House was penciled in as the starter last season opposite Tramon Williams, but the injury killed that notion and shelved House for most of the season, though he did get some playing time during the early part of the regular season.
That fact didn’t please House.
So, now that he says he’s ready for 2013, how does that shape the look of the Packers defensive backfield? Well, it can only strengthen it and add depth at a position where you can’t have enough good players … just ask Hayward about that. When he got his shot, he took full advantage of it.
House will join Hayward, Williams, Sam Shields, and rookie Micah Hyde in a battle royale that should be nearly as exciting to watch as the running back competition shaping up for Training Camp.
“To me, I felt like the job was mine,” House said. “It was mine to lose and I lost it because of injuries to me. But later on in the season, Shields got hurt and it gave me an opportunity to step in there. I think it showed the coaches that I can play.”
Packers defensive coach Joe Whitt has publicly said that the starting cornerback spots are up for whichever player grabs them, leaving the door wide open for a player like House – a relative unknown yet. In fact, there are many who feel that Williams, with his large salary, may be an odd man out given the talent of the younger, less costly, players sneaking up behind him.
I agree that changes could be coming at the position. In addition to Williams’ soft play the past couple of seasons because of his own shoulder injury, in addition to the fact that Shields may be gone to free agency after 2013, the Packers may have to develop these younger players quickly. While Hyde may be moved to safety, right now he’s targeted as a cornerback and will add to the player soup.
Stay tuned on this one and keep an eye on House. Right now he’s a valuable player who may fit well into the mix.
At least he thinks so.