Today, Acme Packing Company will finish up our breakdown of the Green Bay Packers' 90 man roster to analyze each player and his chances of making the roster. That breakdown includes an expansive discussion on those returning on existing contracts as well as the team's additions from the offseason.
Friday brings up a look at the safety depth on the Packers roster. Returning are the two starters at the position in Morgan Burnett and Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix, who had great seasons (Burnett when he was on the field) along with their main back-ups in Micah Hyde and Chris Banjo (who will be addressed in the next piece). This unit, along with the entire secondary, had a terrific 2015 and are poised to do so again in 2016.
Morgan Burnett, No. 42
H/W: 6'1", 209 pounds
2015 Stats: 68 total tackles, five pass deflections, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery
Coming off a terrific 2014 season where Burnett was one of the top run-stopping safeties in the league, Burnett came into the 2015 with high expectations. He did deal with a troublesome calf injury that did cause him to miss five games and cause him to not be back to 100% until the second half of the season. But from when he returned in week eight to the end of the regular season, Burnett had a great season. Still only 27, Burnett will be back as Green Bay's starting strong safety and is by no means in danger of losing out his roster spot.
When healthy, over the past season, Burnett has been a very good safety for the Packers and will be poised for a big 2016 season if he can stay healthy.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, No. 21
H/W: 6'1", 208 pounds
2015 Stats: 100 total tackles, three sacks, three pass deflections, two interceptions, one forced fumble
In his sophomore season, Clinton-Dix had a breakout year and proved why he was a first round draft pick in 2014. He stepped up as the team's leader of the safety core when Morgan Burnett was injured and had a terrific season. Showing his tackling prowess and his ability to get after the quarterback with three sacks, Clinton-Dix had one of the best seasons for a safety in 2015. Going into this coming season, he will once again be the team's starting free safety as he may even improve upon last season.
The team's secondary is in good hands with Clinton-Dix there and will continue to be in 2016.
Micah Hyde, No. 33
H/W: 6'0", 197 pounds
2015 Stats: 55 total tackles, one sack, six pass deflections, three interceptions, two fumble recoveries
Stepping up into a starting role when Morgan Burnett was dealing with his calf injury, Hyde proved valuable as key depth at the safety position when called upon. He had some good numbers, including six pass deflection and three interceptions. Along with being the #3 and main back-up at the safety position, Hyde is also valuable in the return game when needed and mans the slot as well in some sub packages. Hyde's spot on the 53 man roster is likely locked up and he will return to provide terrific depth at both safety positions in 2016. His rookie contract will expire at the end of this season.