A Look at NFL Safeties
Report; Posted on: 2007-05-26 10:53:09 [ Printer friendly / Instant flyer ]
Pictured: Eric Weddle did it all during his career at Utah
by Kevin Roberts
To wrap up our look at the positions, we have a few white safeties to watch and talk about. Even though for every John Lynch there are 40 or 50 black cornerbacks, we still watch this game, in hopes that one day for every John Lynch there will be one black cornerback and one white cornerback. The following is a breakdown for every team at the safety position, heading into the 2007 NFL season.
1. Buffalo Bills:
Jim Leonhard (S)- Leonhard has outstanding playmaking ability and athleticism. If he ever gets any time on the field he'll show just how underrated he was coming out of Wisconsin. If Terrence McGee wasn't already a great kickoff returner, Leonhard could be used there, as well.
John Wendling was drafted in the 6th round. He is another great athlete who could eventually become a starter in the NFL.
Matt Bowen: Cut by the Bills but the veteran may re-sign with Buffalo.
2. Miami Dolphins:
Nothing to talk about here.
3. New England Patriots:
No white playmakers in the d-backfield.
4. New York Jets:
Wow. Not a single starting white safety in the entire AFC East.
5. Pittsburgh Steelers:
Troy Polamalu is as close as it gets.
6. Baltimore Ravens:
It seems the safety position is becoming much like the corner position.
7. Cincinnati Bengals:
They let go of one hell of a playmaker in Kevin Kaesviharn.
8. Cleveland Browns:
As we wave good-bye to Brian Russell, the Browns just got darker.
9. Houston Texans:
Not since the days of Matt Stevens has Houston had a white starting safety.
10. Indianapolis Colts:
Matt Giordano (S/Gunner)- Finally, our string of teams without a white safety ends. Giordano played very well in the playoffs last season, but with a healthy Bob Sanders back, his main role will be on special teams despite his great speed and athleticism.
11. Jacksonville Jaguars:
Nick Sorenson (FS)- Used almost solely as a White Special Teams Demon.
Kevin McCadam (S/Gunner)- He has great speed and could undoubtedly play corner in this league but will undoubtedly be used by Caste System zealot Jack Del Rio as the team's second White Special Teams Demon.
12. Tennessee Titans:
Donnie Nickey (S)- Nickey has the speed and agility to be a running back. In fact, he was a star running back in high school and went to college ready to play as a running back, but was then switched to safety, as whites usually are. Even so, Nickey is gifted enough to at least stick around on a team, but is buried so far right now on the depth chart it doesn't really matter.
13. Kansas City Chiefs:
Jon McGraw (S)- The Detroit Lions knew what everyone doesn't want to admit. Jon McGraw has the speed and skills to play corner. While we all know that won't be happening, McGraw certainly has enough ability to beat out Bernard Pollard. But I'm not going to tease myself.
14. Denver Broncos:
John Lynch (S)- At least we have Lynch to fall back on. He no longer has any kind of speed to mention and is quite a liability when it comes to coverage, but is such a help in run support and rushing the passer. Can be the most disruptive force on the field on any given day.
15. Oakland Raiders:
Stuart Schwiegert (FS)- Along with Michael Huff, Schwiegert helps form on of the best safety duos in the league. He's a fantastic hitter and tackler, with adequate play-making ability. He gets better every year.
16. San Diego Chargers:
Eric Weddle (S)- Weddle could easily play cornerback, but with so much talent already at corner, it's probably best for him to play safety. His speed will help him tremendously in adapting to coverage schemes at the highest level, and the intangibles he brings to the table will help push San Diego's defense that much closer to greatness.
1. Dallas Cowboys:
Roy Williams anchors a solid secondary with no white players.
2. Philadelphia eagles:
Sean Considine (S)- Considine is now the full time starter opposite Brian Dawkins. He's very quick to the ball carrier and has a linebacker's mentality.
The Eagles are finally giving some of their young talent playing time. Good decision.
3. New York Giants:
At least we can reminisce about Jason Sehorn.
4. Washington Redskins:
Adam Archuleta was too fast and athletic for the Redskins. I mean, really, they knew what he brought to the table, and then they tried using him for a scheme that he didn't fit. That was completely their fault.
Reed Doughty - drafted by Washington in 2006.
5. Chicago Bears:
Adam Archuleta (S)- One team's trash is another team's treasure. Archuleta will only make this defense better.
Out with Todd Johnson, in with Archuleta. Fair trade.
6. Detroit Lions:
They ridded themselves of that pesky white defensive back in Jon McGraw.
7. Minnesota Vikings:
Haven't had a white man playing safety in Minnesota since Brian Russell.
8. Green Bay Packers:
Remember the days of Scott McGarrahan running up and down the field as a gunner, and never getting any kind of chance at safety? Yeah, those were great days...
Instead of drafting guys like Eric Weddle or John Wendling in this year's draft, the Packers continue to look blindly for a black replacement for Leroy Butler.
9. New Orleans Saints:
Kevin Kaesviharn (S/CB)- Started out as a cornerback with the Bengals and has made a name for himself as a quality tackler and play-maker. He should have a shot at the starting job in New Orleans.
Steve Gleason (S)- Exclusively a special teamer, but one hell of a player, at that.
10. Atlanta Falcons:
The much slowed down Lawyer Milloy is still starting in this league. Impressive or depressing?
11. Carolina Panthers:
12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
Sabby Piscitelli (S)- Piscitelli is very gifted in a number of ways. He can play either safety position, as well as linebacker. He probably could play corner and excel there too, but let's not get carried away. This is the NFL we're talking about after all.
13. Arizona Cardinals:
Terrence Holt, a very average safety, was signed this season to bolster the blackest defense in the league.
14. Seattle Seahawks:
Brian Russell (FS)- Left Cleveland for a back-up role behind Deon Grant. That isn't necessarily a permanent role, but that's the way things have started out in training camp.
15. San Francisco 49ers:
16. St. Louis Rams:
Todd Johnson (FS)- Very effective in the time he got with Chicago, and figures to be in the mix for the starting spit in St. Louis.
Hopefully the white rookies will be able to make an impact. I expect Eric Weddle and Sabby Piscitelli to play well and my free agent sleeper is Kevin Kaesviharn with New Orleans.
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