It’s clear at this point the Packers will wait until the draft to address their need at safety.
They decided not to enter the high-priced bidding of top free agents Jarius Byrd and T.J. Ward, which comes to no surprise considering Ted Thompson‘s offseason tendency to avoid overpaying for any players in March.
It’s amazing considering heading into camp last summer it appeared the starting strong safety position came down to a battle between Jennings and Jerron McMillian–neither with the team currently.
Simply put, the Packers need more impact plays from their safety position. Their safeties laid a goose egg in the interception department last season, and even Morgan Burnett was surprisingly invisible in the secondary for a majority of the season.
Burnett’s versatility to play either free or strong safety does give the Packers some flexibility when drafting a safety, however.
They can go after a hard-hitting downhill player, like Louisville’s Calvin Pryor or Deone Bucannon from Washington State, or they could target a deep roaming center fielder who excels in coverage, like Alabama’s Ha Ha Clinton-Dix or Florida State’s Terrence Brooks.
Northern Illinois’s Jimmie Ward is a balanced safety who could play either position, like Burnett, and also be found in an early round.
If the Packers don’t see the value there and pass on a safety in the draft, then we can assume their plan is to play Micah Hyde at free safety and start Burnett as their strong safety next season.