Safeties (10)

Steve Atwater, Brian Dawkins, Troy Polamalu, Ed Reed.

Modern Positional Average

Safeties: Steve Atwater (2020), Brian Dawkins (2018), John Lynch (2021), Troy Polamalu (2020), Ed Reed (2019).

Note that in 2019, all Defensive Backs were grouped together, and were Champ Bailey, Brian Dawkins, Ty Law, Ed Reed, and Aeneas Williams.  Cornerbacks and Safeties were split in 2020 but kept at four in both categories to keep everything modern.  With the addition of Lynch, we now have five modern Safeties, resulting in significant changes.  Games increased by nearly 9, but Approximate Value dropped by 10, resulting in a decreased AV/G of nearly .09.  Pro Bowls remained the same and First Team All-Pros dropped by .4   Interceptions dropped by more than 3, and Tackles rose by nearly 40.

Stats

  • Games 189.4
  • Approximate Value 120
  • AV/G 0.6336
  • Pro Bowls 8.4
  • First Team All-Pros 3.4
  • Interceptions 36.6
  • Tackles 964.6

Last Year’s Rank #26.

Earl Thomas’ career might be over, as he was released after a mid-game fight with a fellow Safety in the 2020 pre-season.  He was not signed by any other team, and if this is the case it likely puts Thomas on the wrong side of the Hall of Fame ledger despite being an All-Decade player, Super Bowl Champion and seven Pro Bowls.  We would love to see Thomas get another chance somewhere.

Stats

  • Games 140 (-49.4)
  • Approximate Value 101 (-19)
  • AV/G 0.7214 (+0.0878)
  • Pro Bowls 7 (-1.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 3 (-0.4)
  • Interceptions 30 (-6.6)
  • Tackles 713 (-251.6)
Smith is on a five-season streak of Pro Bowl Selections, which on the surface seems to bode well for the Safety.  However, he is not close to any of the MPAs, and will need to keep up his current pace into his mid-30s.  That isn’t impossible, but it is more likely that he will regress instead.

Stats

  • Games 114 (-75.4)
  • Approximate Value 65 (-55)
  • AV/G 0.5702 (-0.0634)
  • Pro Bowls 5 (-3.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 1 (-2.4)
  • Interceptions 23 (-13.6)
  • Tackles 658 (-306.6)
Mathieu is an intriguing case as he was a surprise All-Decade recipient, but when you gain that honor, you will be forever talked about in regards to the Hall.  Saying that, his AV/G is well below what a Hall of Famer should be, and he is a Pro Bowler only once.

Stats

  • Games 98 (-91.4)
  • Approximate Value 44 (-76)
  • AV/G 0.4490 (-0.1846)
  • Pro Bowls 1 (-7.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 2 (-1.4)
  • Interceptions 17 (-19.6)
  • Tackles 472 (-492.6)
Eddie Jackson is a three-year veteran, all of which with the Chicago Bears.  The Strong Safety was a First Team All-Pro in 2018 and is on a two-year run of Pro Bowls.

Stats

  • Games 46 (-143.4)
  • Approximate Value 30 (-90)
  • AV/G 0.6522 (+0.0186)
  • Pro Bowls 2 (-6.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 1 (-2.4)
  • Interceptions 10 (-26.6)
  • Tackles 184 (-780.6)
Adams also notably has 12 Sacks, an excellent number for a Safety in any three-year period.  Adams forced his way out of the Jets, and the Seahawks gave up a lot of high picks to get him.  If Adams is what we think he is, Seattle won the trade. 

Stats

  • Games 46 (-143.4)
  • Approximate Value 29 (-91)
  • AV/G 0.6304 (-0.0032000000000001)
  • Pro Bowls 2 (-6.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 1 (-2.4)
  • Interceptions 2 (-34.6)
  • Tackles 273 (-691.6)
McCourty is 33 and his time is running out.  A two-time Pro Bowler, McCourty has three Super Bowls to console him should the Hall of Fame never call him.

Stats

  • Games 155 (-34.4)
  • Approximate Value 75 (-45)
  • AV/G 0.4839 (-0.1497)
  • Pro Bowls 2 (-6.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 0 (-3.4)
  • Interceptions 26 (-10.6)
  • Tackles 772 (-192.6)
Collins might be a three-time Pro Bowler, but his AV/G is not great.  Collins has however put up respectable tackling numbers, but there is a lot of work to do.

Stats

  • Games 74 (-115.4)
  • Approximate Value 35 (-85)
  • AV/G 0.4370 (-0.1966)
  • Pro Bowls 3 (-5.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 1 (-2.4)
  • Interceptions 8 (-28.6)
  • Tackles 554 (-410.6)
Fitzpatrick was traded early last year from Miami to Pittsburgh, and it was a great year for the Free Safety with a First Team All-Pro and 19 in Approximate Value.  This was only Fitzpatrick’s second season, but it was so good that he belongs here.

Stats

  • Games 32 (-157.4)
  • Approximate Value 23 (-97)
  • AV/G 0.7188 (+0.0852)
  • Pro Bowls 1 (-7.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 1 (-2.4)
  • Interceptions 7 (-29.6)
  • Tackles 149 (-815.6)
Baker is already a two-time Pro Bowl Selection and was a First Team All-Pro as a rookie in 2017.  He also led the NFL in Solo Tackles last tear with 104.

Stats

  • Games 46 (-143.4)
  • Approximate Value 21 (-99)
  • AV/G 0.4543 (-0.1793)
  • Pro Bowls 2 (-6.4)
  • First Team All-Pros 1 (-2.4)
  • Interceptions 0 (-36.6)
  • Tackles 323 (-641.6)