After an ankle injury in September, S Raven Greene was placed on Injured Reserve. This week, the Packers have announced that they are moving Greene to the primary roster in time for the playoffs. This move comes just after CB Tony Brown was released.
Greene was added to the Packers roster last year as an undrafted rookie from James Madison. His season ended in November with his first ankle injury against the Seahawks.
In addition to his role on special teams, Greene functions as additional depth in the safety position for when Pettine utilizes the nickel package. S Ibraheim Campbell was also moved to the primary roster from the PUP list in November. Safeties Darnell Savage, Adrian Amos, and Ibraheim Campbell started last week against the Detroit Lions — while S Will Redmond did not get any snaps during the game. Campbell has had 7 tackles since returning to the field in early December. On the other hand, Greene managed 6 solo tackles in the season opener against Chicago Bears before succumbing to injury the following week against the Minnesota Vikings.
Greene is the second player this season to be moved from the IR with the other being TE Jace Sternberger.
As a side note, while writing this, I came across a great discussion on the role of DBs in the NFL as offenses have adapted to a more pass-heavy approach over the decades. Here is the link – some great discussion in the comments section.
Here is an excerpt from the comments:
Here’s the thing that most fans seem to not realize. The game of football has been transitioning to more DB’s for decades. The “base” defense of the ’40’s and ’50’s was a 5-3 defense, 5 DL (NT, 2 DT’s, 2 DE’s) with 3 LB’s and 3 DB’s. That’s the era of football when teams rarely threw the ball more than 6 or 7 times a game (if even that much).
When teams starting throwing more, 10+ times a game in the late ’50’s and ’60’s, teams took out a DL player and created a 4th DB, the SS. The SS was the 8th player in the box to stop the run and he could play pass defense as well.
In the ’70’s, when teams started running the West Coast Offense or “Air Coryell” offenses with multiple WR’s on the field and were throwing 20+ times a game, the Nickel Back (5th DB) was introduced. In the ’80’s, with more passing, the Dime Back (6th DB) was introduced. Starting in the late ’90’s and early 2000’s, teams had more Nickel snaps on defense than they did with their “base” 4-3 or 3-4 defenses because situational substitution packages started to dominate the league with multiple WR sets.
Now, because the rules for the passing game are relaxed, defense are starting to use 7 DB’s. With teams now averaging 35 passes a game (passing 10 more times than running), it’s obvious that more DB types are needed to defend the pass.
There has been a saying in football for the last several years … “you can never have enough good CB’s on the roster”. This is why. You have to be able to cover and contain the passing game.