Despite last week’s loss to the Eagles at home, the Packers are off to a 3-1 start — placing them first in the NFC North. Even though they have given up a lot of yards on the ground, the Packers are eighth in fewest points allowed and third in pass defense. Give credit to a secondary that includes rookie Darnell Savage, who has opened eyes in the first quarter of the season.
Savage was selected by the Packers with the 21st overall pick in the 2019 Draft. The 5’ 11”, 198 pound safety out of Maryland was not in NFL.com’s preseason rookie rankings but just four games in lands at number two on the list behind only Gardner Minshew of the Jacksonville Jaguars, who stepped in when quarterback Nick Foles was lost to injury in the first quarter of opening week.
Against the Bears in week one, Savage recorded three tackles, a quarterback hit and a pass defense. He followed with a six-tackle performance in a win over the Vikings, which included a forced fumble. All over the field against the Broncos in week three, Savage recorded his first career interception and added four tackles and an assist. Add in three tackles last week and Savage has registered 15 tackles for the season.
A very intense player who has shown tremendous instincts and ability to fly around the field has made Savage an integral part of the Packers’ defense. He has played every defensive snap this season and has been in on over 30 percent of special team snaps.
He is third on the Packers in tackles behind linebacker Blake Martinez and safety Adrian Amos. The secondary of Savage, Amos, Kevin King and Jaire Alexander have become one of the best in the game, having recorded 58 solo tackles, three interceptions, 14 passes defensed and two forced fumbles. Savage has thus far exceeded expectations and if his production continues at this high level, don’t be surprised to see him on the All-Rookie team at season’s end.
No slight whatsoever to Jaire Alexander because he’s showing up, and doing things future Pro Bowlers do.
With that said…i think most of the success of the secondary has been from the residual of the relentless pass rush of the boys up front, sans the Eagle game. Any strong front will make a any secondary look respectful, that’s just how it is. Or maybe it could just be the strong tutoring of Tramon Williams. Maybe when the 12th pick in the draft comes in to ball, the opponents offense just gets nervous. Idk man…. I don’t have all the answers
If anyone wants to crown Savage at this point, have at it.