The Denver Broncos drafted two safeties back-to-back in the 2021 NFL Draft. One of those was Jamar Johnson out of Indiana. He was selected in the fifth round just 12 spots behind fellow safety Caden Sterns who Denver also drafted.
#41 Jamar Johnson
Age 22. 6’01”, 197 lbs.
Unlike Sterns, Johnson did not get onto the field as a rookie and spent much of the season on the inactive list. That could put him on the fence fighting for a roster spot in 2022 with a new coaching staff.
How he fits with the Broncos
Last June, former Broncos head coach Vic Fangio noted that Johnson was following a ‘logical progression’ early on. However, the issue is the lack of progression enough to challenge for playing time on a defense that was piling up injuries in the secondary.
I think Jamar Johnson's in danger of being replaced in the secondary. Just 28 snaps last year and all were special teams only. Can't think of another reason they'd draft DTY because that safety room is super crowded. https://t.co/ETroXLBRgi— AJ Schulte (@AJDraftScout) May 21, 2022
He played just 28 snaps all season and none of them were on defense. Instead, it was fellow rookie Caden Sterns who took off with 311 snaps on defense and played well enough to be considered a guy who will be challenging for playing time next season.
The drafting of fifth-round pick Delarrin Turner-Yell could also signal potential risks for Johnson to make the team as well.
Jamar Johnson is entering a critical offseason. As our own AJ Schulte noted last month, the Broncos won’t likely keep too many safeties and that puts Johnson at significant risk of being the odd man out when the 53-man roster is finalized.
While many were expecting him to be the third safety at one point this offseason, the team brought back veteran Kareem Jackson and signed JR Reed.
Then the Broncos spent another fifth-round pick at safety in Oklahoma’s Delarrin Turner-Yell. From a roster construction standpoint, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to keep that many safeties around, even if they are planning on playing a significant amount of dime.
He is a guy we’ll need to keep close tabs on in training camp. Do you think he’ll fight his way onto the roster?
Will Jamar Johnson make the final 53-man roster?
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