The biggest story out of Packers' camp this year did not fail to deliver its share of drama in the first preseason game. Overall, the cornerbacks as a unit played pretty well. There was plenty of good coverage, some tipped passes, and even an interception from Tramon Williams. When there were breakdowns in the secondary it mostly came from poor decisions from the safeties, at least in my humble opinion. All in all a good day for a much maligned group this past offseason.
With Sam Shields out for the game, the spotlight was on Jarrett Bush, Davon House, and Casey Hayward. These three players had the chance to show they were ready to step up and be the starting cornerback opposite Williams for the Packers this fall. I think it's safe to say that absent his injury, Davon House would be the clear frontrunner in this battle. But the full effect of the night leaves the current standing of these three players a bit of a mystery. Let's break down each player, the stats he was able to put together and where this battle sits right now.
Davon House was awesome. He had great tackling and great coverage. There were a few points during the night where it seemed like he was just about everywhere. Unfortunately his night was cut short with a shoulder injury. As of the time of this writing there has not been any word as to how long he will have to sit out. Hopefully it's not long and we can have House wrap up this particular camp battle sooner rather than later.
This may surprise you, but I don't think Jarrett Bush was that bad. There was only one play where he gave up big yardage, and that was against Vincent Brown. Let's face the facts here, Brown carved up both Hayward and Bush a bit last night. The big play that Bush gave up he didn't necessarily have bad coverage, but he did slip on the play. That's unacceptable, but it's also not unheard of for a player to slip on a play. Bush has a bad reputation and moments like that don't change people's minds, but over all he was okay.
Casey Hayward had a bit of a rough night all things considered. Vincent Brown may had had one really good play against Bush, but he had a couple against Hayward. Hayward bit on a few double moves and showed that he's still a little rough in coverage. He was also able to break up a few plays and show some of those instincts he has been talked about on, but it's clear he still has a way to grow before he is able to overtake Bush and House.
At the end of the night the leader of the pack is probably Jarrett Bush. The main reason for this is the questions surrounding the health of House. Until House is healthy the best option for the #2 CB spot is Bush. Hayward will still needs time to grow into his role, and should push for reps as the season goes on. Sam Shields needs to get healthy and start showing up in practice and next week against the Browns if he doesn't want to fall too far behind the rest of the pack.
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