Questions may still remain at the safety position for the Green Bay Packers, but this is a room that has become quite crowded over the offseason.
Following the recent signing of Jonathan Owens, the Packers now have nine safeties on the roster, a number of whom could make a push for the 53-man roster. This is a position where there was a lack of playmaking, not to mention that poor tackling and coverage breakdowns that resulted in big plays for opposing offenses happened all too regularly last season.
GM Brian Gutekunst didn’t have the luxury of salary cap space this offseason to address the need in free agency where a number of top names were available. This also wasn’t a year where he could lean on the draft, given the lack of high-end talent and overall depth of the safety class. However, his approach to the offseason, at the very least, gave the Packers options at the position.
Since free agency opened, Green Bay re-signed Rudy Ford and Dallin Leavitt. They would also sign Tarvarius Moore, and Owens, as already mentioned. In the draft, the Packers would select Anthony Johnson and sign undrafted rookie Benny Sapp from UNI. This group of players joined Darnell Savage, Innis Gaines, and James Wiggins, who were on the roster.
What we know about this current Packers’ safety room is that Darnell Savage will be starting, something that Matt LaFleur told us during the NFL Owners’ meetings and that there is a lot of special teams experience within this position group. Everything else, specifically who will be playing next to Savage and who will make the final roster, is up in the air.
Ford, Moore, and Owens each have roughly 1,000 career defensive snaps, in addition to each being key special teams contributors as well. Ford provided some stability to the safety position for the Packers late last season with his willingness to help in the run game and simply being in the right spots to make plays on the ball.
Moore has 1,073 career snaps on defense, but only 60 have come since the 2020 season. He missed all of 2021 with an injury and was special teams player for San Francisco in 2022. The majority of Owens’ playing time came last season, where he was all over the football field, making 117 total tackles, and also one of the more reliable tacklers at the position, missing only 11 and ranking 15th overall by PFF’s grading system.
Although a seventh-round rookie, Johnson will be competing for playing time as well. Ben Fennell would say following the…