The secondary was supposed to be the strength of the Green Bay Packers‘ defense in 2022.
But was it?
In some ways, yes. In others, far from it.
What does that mean, and do the Packers need upgrades in the defensive backfield this offseason?
2022 season review
The return of Jaire Alexander helped Green Bay’s pass defense tremendously. He defended 14 passes and intercepted a career-best five on his way to the Pro Bowl and second-team All-Pro honors.
Rasul Douglas spent time in the slot early in the season, but he is far better when lined up outside. Following Eric Stokes’ injury, Douglas spent more time outside, and it helped him get back to his best. Douglas made 13 pass defenses and four interceptions.
It was a tough second season for 2021 first-round pick Eric Stokes. He struggled early on and then suffered a season-ending injury in Week 9. According to Pro Football Reference, Stokes allowed 80% of passes to be completed and a passer rating of 123.5 in his coverage.
Adrian Amos was inconsistent in a contract year, while Darnell Savage lost his starting job for three games late in the season.
Safety now becomes a question mark entering the offseason.
What’s next in 2023?
Adrian Amos is a free agent this offseason. He turns 30 in the spring, so there’s every chance the Packers decide to draft his replacement.
Darnell Savage remains under contract, as the Packers picked up his fifth-year option a year ago. But that doesn’t mean he should be guaranteed a starting job on defense next season.
While he played well in the final few games, Savage lost his starting job for a few games in November and December.
The Packers should’ve added a safety early in last year’s draft. Now they may need to draft an immediate starter or sign a free agent to replace Amos.