Note: The Packers have 7 Safeties and 9 corners going into training camp. This article would be way too long if I covered them all.

With a coach that stood at the podium last week and said, “15-1 doesn’t cut it” and a general manager who drafted his first six picks on the defense – I think we all know where the focus lies for the Pack.

I’ve talked a lot about OLB, ILB and LBs around here, so let’s take a look at cornerback and safety.

I’m not in the camp to think Woodson needs to move to safety just yet. Do I think he needs to be able to play both positions? Absolutely. Rather than ask the question of, “Should he be safety or cornerback?” we should all remember that TT and MM are evil geniuses and are probably coming up with a unique scheme of their own.

The loss of Nick Collins stung in 2011, and it will continue to do so in 2012. You had a guy who had big-play action, so Woodson is going to have to be able to shift between cornerback and safety.  The Pack won’t be able to just put Woodson on the elite receivers on the opposing team, but rather train him to judge formations. He’ll also have to gauge ball and field position better to allow Peprah and even Burnett to step it up.

A big problem for the Pack was they would put pressure at the front, making the CBs cover receivers longer. Even the best cover guys struggle with that in the backfield – it’s too much time. You can’t gauge the pocket for that long, so it gives the opposing QB time to make the play. Woodson can’t line up wide, but needs to line up on the inside at least 80 percent of the time.

He’s not quick enough as he ages – BUT – he can play almost any position in the nickel or dime. In those scenarios, Woodson will mostly likely line up against the slot receiver and be on the inside. In base defense scenarios, I see Burnett as a traditional safety and Woodson in a more hybrid role.

 Of note: Capers has used base defense about 25 percent since he came to the Pack. They liked to use a three-cornerback set where you have Woodson, Burnett and then CBs of Williams and Shields.

Expect the rookie Jerron McMillian to make a play for a starting job at some point, but the Pack will be ok with Peprah for now. M.D. Jennings is also someone to watch in the nickel and dime schemes.

In 2009/2010, the Pack averaged 42 sacks. In 2011, only 29 sacks with the weird sporadic pressure at the front.

 So, what do you think? Sound off on where you think Woodson will play in 2012.

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

  • Ca packer fan

    You should put down the pen. You know nothing about the Packers. For the record, House is a CB and Hawk is an ILB.

  • http://www.laurenafernandez.com Lauren

    Ouch. You’re certainly entitled to your opinion. Where did I say that Hawk was anything but that? Aware that I didn’t write about House being a CB – in fact, I talked about it with someone else over Twitter. It wasn’t relevant to the point I was trying to make, especially since I believe he won’t be a starter until at least mid-season.

    If you’d like to argue, I’m more than happy to do so with someone who won’t hide behind an anonymous name. If you’re going to insult, tell me which of my points are wrong. We are both allowed to have opinions.

    I wrote that Ive talked a lot about OLB and LB lately…. which is true. The Hawk comment was just something I added in.

  • Tarynfor12

    @Lauren,this statement clearly has you having House as an ILB or Hawk as a CB.

    “Hawk bias aside, since I can’t stand his type of play and vehemently put him at 4th in his position (because House hasn’t played that much, so experience plays a role) there is also shifting and definitive changes that need to be made”.

    Under no circumstances should they appear in the same dialogue of eachs position in evaluations.

    As to Woodson moving to full time Safety…NO!
    Woodson isn’t a sure tackler as his miss tackle average is 1 in every 7.1 attempts.

  • http://www.laurenafernandez.com Lauren

    Thanks, Taryn – I can appreciate this type of feedback, and can blame it (somewhat) on more of a rambling mind than anything. Honestly, I wasn’t evaluating Hawk as I was pointing out again that I don’t like him. I can see where it’s confusing and will definitely fix. Thanks for commenting :)

    I think you’re right that he won’t move to a full time safety – still think it will be more of a hybrid role. Didn’t know what his miss tackle average was, so thanks for posting that as well.

  • voskidly

    I am coming to this late but wonder about a Charles Woodson at safety. Charles Woodson creates so much at the line of scrimmage by lining up in the slot. He is a maniac who will take chances. Maybe this is where the tackling takes a hit.
    With more options or what should be a better rush up front he is another option to create plays in the opposing teams’ backfield. Can’t help wondering if he would influence and help younger players? Is Charles Woodson more valuable at line of scrimmage causing mayhem in blitz packages or in the backfield? The missed tackles worry me but the mayhem he creates with laying it all on the line seems more plausible. With both the Bears and Lions able to line up 4 and 5 receiver sets getting to the quarterback will be important. Come on regular season! I am ready for some football.