Pro Football Focus judged the Indianapolis Chinese wholesale jerseys Colts’ T.J. Green as the worst safety in the NFL among the 91 who played the position with some regularity during the 2017 season. But the Colts have high hopes for the former Sylacauga High School standout after his rocky rookie season.
Indianapolis defensive coordinator Ted Monachino looks to former Alabama All-American Landon Collins for inspiration of what Green might become in the Colts’ secondary.
Like Green, Collins was a safety picked in the second round of the NFL Draft, and his rookie season in 2015 with the New York Giants wasn’t a smooth one. But in 2016, Collins earned All-Pro recognition and became the first player in NFL history with at least 100 solo tackles, two sacks, five interceptions and 12 passes defended in the same season.
“I think you figured out that young players are always going to be young players no matter how talented they are,” Monachino told the Colts’ official web site about Green. “T.J. made quantum leaps in some areas. Needs to continue to grow in a lot of different areas. Obviously, I don’t think he played to the level that he believed he could have. …
“He’s another role guy, too. We can do a lot of things with T.J. So I see the arrow way up on T.J. Green, and I think in his second year, you look at a guy like Landon Collins, the jump he made from Year 1 to Year 2. We would hope T.J. could make a similar jump.”
The Colts need Green to make a jump, too. Safety Mike Adams left the Colts in free agency for a two-year contract with the Carolina Panthers. That could elevate Green into Indianapolis’ starting lineup in 2017 after he started four games as a rookie.
Indianapolis has Clayton Geathers at free safety and re-signed veteran Darius Butler earlier this month. Butler has been a cornerback for most of his eight-year career, but he got some action at safety last season.
There are differences between Collins and Green, of course, starting with how much they played as rookies. Green was on the field for 44.4 percent of the Colts’ defensive snaps in 2016. Collins played 94.6 percent of the Giants’ defensive snaps as a rookie, when he was New York’s free safety. In 2016, Collins moved to strong safety.
Green made the transition to safety in college.
Coming out of Sylacauga High School, Green had two scholarship offers from schools in the Power 5 conferences — Auburn and Clemson. Green arrived at Clemson as a wide receiver, and he caught two passes as a freshman. In his sophomore season, Green switched to safety. As a junior, he became a starter, and the Tigers went all the way to the CFP championship game, where they lost to Alabama. Green then left for the NFL with a year of eligibility remaining.