I really wish this was a rare scene for our safety group last year. (Photo by Jim Prisching/Getty Images)
The last position in our series on the 2012 roster projection deals with a position group in transition. After Nick Collins sustained a neck injury in Carolina of last year there has been a significant hole in the secondary. Collins was on his way to a stellar career and the Packers are going to miss him. At the moment there is no one in this position group that can do all that could do had he been healthy enough to play, but that doesn't mean that the Packers are SOL on this front either. The Packers do have some interesting young talent coming up through the ranks which may lead to promising amount of depth for years to come.
Roster locks: Morgan Burnett - Okay he may not be the only one who is a lock to make the roster, but he's the only one with a job locked down and the only one not competing for field time.
Job Security: Ironclad - I like Burnett. I think that he's the real deal back there and looks to have a promising career ahead of him. He doesn't have the same deep ball hawking skills that Collins had, and he has to stay healthy for a full season, but overall things are looking up for him.
The Other Guys: M.D. Jennings, Charlie Peprah - I thought about putting Peprah on the cut list. I really did. It's something that wouldn't surprise me if a couple of the younger guys can have a lights out camp, but until then Peprah really does enough to keep his spot on the roster. Jennings has turned some heads on special teams and in the early camps. If he builds this into a strong camp he should be able to turn that into some significant playtime as well.
Job Security: Strong - Nothing is written in stone for these guys. They may not be on the bubble or in serious danger of losing a job, but a guy coming out of no where may bump them off the roster.
Rookie Contributor: Jerron McMillian - Lots of questions surrounding him at the moment, but he should be able to be in the rotation for playing time. He may start right away, but he will have to earn that spot rather than have it handed to him like Collins and Burnett had once upon a time.
Job Security: Ironclad - I know some were scratching their heads when the Packers drafted this guy, but he will make the team and will get some decent minutes this year at the very least.
PUP / Practice Squad: Sean Richardson - I wish I could tell you a whole bunch about Richardson and why he's deserving of a PS spot, but right now I can't. I do have a gut feeling that the Packers are going to try and keep a guy around on the PS to develop into a future contributor at this spot since they are in desperate need of a long term answer here though. Right now Richardson is the only one qualified other than McMillian who they won't even chance the waiver wire.
Cut: Anthony Levine - His name appears on the cut list but don't let that fool you. Levine is the dark horse of the safety race. The Packers have always liked him but he just hasn't quite shown enough to make it on the 53 yet. He's put in two years on the Packers PS and so this is it for him. If he has a great camp he may be able to beat out Peprah.
Roster Spots remaining: 1