Potential options at safety for the Green Bay Packers in the 2019 NFL Draft.
Going into the 2018 NFL season, many Packers fans were questioning whether the safety position was solid enough to make a difference on the new Mike Pettine-led defense.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix‘s play had really taken a dip towards the end of the 2016 season and into the 2017 season, leaving fans wondering if his play would would make a change for the better in a new defensive scheme.
Unfortunately, a new scheme did not help relieve Clinton-Dix’s issues on defense, causing the Packers to trade him to the Washington Redskins at the trade deadline for a fourth-round pick.
Alongside Clinton-Dix starting the season at safety was Kentrell Brice, a third-year player who had spent his past two seasons in Green Bay as a rotational safety. A player known for his hard hitting from the safety position, ended up having a very disappointing season.
The same hard-hitting, sure-tackling safety we saw the past couple seasons did not look the same. He was a major liability in coverage and his lack of understanding of assignments consistently hurt the defense in 2018.
Due to Clinton-Dix being traded and Brice not performing as expected, we saw a revolving door at the safety position, as well as Tramon Williams being moved from cornerback to safety to fill the spot of Clinton-Dix. We saw Josh Jones, Ibraheim Campbell, Eddie Pleasant, and Raven Greene all get chances at safety.
Brice, Campbell and Pleasant are all free agents this offseason. And honestly the only one I could see the Packers bringing back is Ibraheim Campbell. Campbell looked like a depth piece that could help this defense going forward.
It’s safe to say the safety position will be completely revamped this offseason. There are going to be a few big name free agent safeties out there, such as Tyrann Mathieu, Landon Collins, Earl Thomas, Adrian Amos and Lamarcus Joyner. We will see if GM Brian Gutekunst pulls the trigger on any of those guys, but regardless, I would imagine safety is certainly targeted by the Packers in the 2019 draft.
Let’s take a look at my pre-combine safety rankings, in addition to a few options the Packers could target throughout day one, two and three of the 2019 NFL Draft.
2019 NFL Draft safety rankings
- Juan Thornhill (Virginia) (Sr.)
- Nasir Adderley (Delaware) (Sr.)
- Johnathan Abram (Miss St.) (Sr.)
- Amani Hooker (Iowa) (Jr.)
- Deionte Thompson (Bama) (Jr.)
- Darnell Savage Jr. (Maryland) (Sr.)
- Mike Edwards (Kentucky) (Sr.)
- Chauncey Gardner-Johnson (Florida) (Jr.)
- Ugo Amadi (Oregon) (Sr.)
- Malik Gant (Marshall) (Jr.)
- Sheldrick Redwine (Miami (FL) ) (Sr.)
- Jaquan Johnson (Miami (FL) ) (Sr.)
- Taylor Rapp (Washington) (Jr.)
- Saquan Hampton (Rutgers) (Sr.)
- Mike Bell (Fresno St.) (Jr.)
- Khari Willis (Mich St.) (Sr.)
- Lukas Denis (Boston College) (Sr.)
- Marvell Tell III (USC) (Jr.)
- Marquise Blair (Utah) (Sr.)
- Andrew Wingard (Wyoming) (Sr.)
- PJ Locke III (Texas) (Sr.)
- Jontrell Rocquemore (Utah St.) (Sr.)
- Chris Johnson (N. Alabama) (Sr.)
- Delvon Randall (Temple) (Sr.)
- Will Harris (Boston College) (Sr.)