Here is a look at the Green Bay Packers’ projected depth chart at safety for the start of training camp:
Note: Coverage stats are from ProFootballFocus.com.
Morgan Burnett (6-1, 209; fourth season): Burnett didn’t blossom into a household name, like coach Mike McCarthy predicted before last season, but he was quietly solid. His 137 tackles and two sacks set career highs. He intercepted two passes and forced two fumbles. He’s an excellent player when he moves toward the line of scrimmage. Packer Report’s research was used in Burnett’s contract negotiations.
M.D. Jennings (6-0, 195; third season): Jennings will forever be known for his role in the “Fail Mary” game at Seattle. However, he had a decent first year in the starting lineup. Too thin to be much of an asset at the line of scrimmage — which means Burnett has to do the heavy lifting in the run game — Jennings did rank second among safeties with one reception allowed for every 44.0 snaps in coverage. He has all 10 starts among the other players on the depth chart.
Jerron McMillian (5-11, 203; second season): McMillian should challenge Jennings if he can tighten up his game. He’s a big hitter, which the Packers need. Plus, he broke up 13 passes compared to six for Jennings in equal playing time. However, he occasionally got lost and missed too many tackles.
Sean Richardson (6-2, 216; second season): Richardson, with a rare combination of speed and size, finally earned some playing time on defense before a neck injury, deemed minor at the time, eventually required surgery. Richardson didn’t practice during the offseason. If he’s healthy and not gun shy, he’s a potential starter. If not ...
Chaz Powell (6-0, 203; first season): Powell went undrafted in 2012 and joined the practice squad in December. He played cornerback as a senior at Penn State after opening his career at receiver. He’s the school’s career leader with 73 kickoff returns and 1,886 kickoff return yards.
David Fulton (6-0, 196; rookie/UDFA): As a cornerback at Division II Chowan, Fulton allowed three catches as a senior, his coach said. Couldn’t get into a pro day and wound up flying well below the radar. The Packers added him for the final two weeks of the offseason.
Ryan McMahon (5-11, 210; rookie/UDFA): After spending two seasons at USC, leading the Trojans in special-teams tackles as a sophomore, he transferred to Sacramento State. He started 22 consecutive games, finishing with 183 tackles (97 solo), including seven for losses and a sack, plus 11 passes defensed, two forced fumbles and an interception. He was signed on Thursday; he tried out at the rookie camp.
Total: 7. On 2012 opening roster: 5 (Burnett, Charles Woodson, Jennings, McMillian, Richardson).
Final prediction: 4 (Burnett, Jennings, McMillian, Richardson).