The Safety protects the back of the field on defense. It is important have a good strong and free safety to make an impact on the run game as well as protect the deep passes. The Safety is relied upon to make the big tackle if a play breaks down. They are the difference between a big gain and a huge play. Lets see which teams have the best safeties in the game today.
Tyvon Branch, Oakland Raiders - A top-level athlete at the position, Branch was often asked to do too much in a secondary that featured very poor cornerback play.
Chris Clemons, Miami Dolphins - Casual fans might be surprised to see Chris Clemons ranked so high, but when looking from a scouting perspective on his 2012 season, it fits.
Ryan Clark, Pittsburgh Steelers - A physical safety who may not fit the NFL mold for much longer, Clark is a solid all-around free safety. His 2012 season ranked as one of the best we saw.
Quintin Mikell, St. Louis Rams - He showed improved cover skills and once again was a strong run defender and a tough tackler in space.
Earl Thomas, Seattle Seahawks - Thomas is one of the better free safeties in the NFL today. While he lacks prototypical size, Thomas makes up for that with excellent vision, range and fluid ability in coverage.
Kerry Rhodes, Arizona Cardinals - He’s still an active, aggressive free safety who can close on the ball and make plays in the passing game.
T.J. Ward, Cleveland Browns - Ward makes his impact on the game in run support and in intimidating receivers over the middle. What he lacks in pure cover skills or speed, he makes up for with big hits and consistent presence against the run.
Reshad Jones, Miami Dolphins - Jones was a beast all season, showing up as a cover man and run defender. He’s one of the NFL’s best up-and-coming players.
Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills - Few safeties had the all-around year that Byrd did in the Bills defense. He’s a triple threat as a cover man, run defender and ball hawk who can create turnovers in the secondary.
Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers - Hands down, the best safety in the NFL when looking at coverage, tackling and run support. Weddle is a complete player who can thrive no matter the down and distance.