Playing the position of safety in the NFL is one of the toughest jobs to undertake.
The Broncos had 2nd round draft pick Rahim Moore back there as a starting safety when the season began. They have since promoted rookie Quinton Carter to free safety after Moore showed that he had difficulty making the transition to the pro level. Carter is a rookie as well and has missed some reads, but he is doing a better job than Moore was of managing the defense.
Defensive coordinator Dennis Allen was asked in today’s press conference why young safeties have such a hard time in the secondary. His response boiled down youth and to difficulties making adjustments.
“Those guys have got to be the quarterbacks on the field,” Allen said. “They’ve got to be able to get us in all the right checks, they’ve got to be able to get us in all the right alignments, and that’s the toughest thing for those young guys to do.”
Making those calls and adjustments against a well led offense like the San Diego Chargers or the Green Bay Packers is especially important for a young safety to grab a hold off.
“Adjustments based off of formation, based off of call, and understanding what teams are going to try to do based off of different tendencies that they have from a formation adjustment standpoint,” Allen explained.
Carter filled in for Moore during the Broncos game against the Raiders when Moore suffered a concussion. He won the job by putting up 8 tackles in the game. Since Carter has been back there, the Broncos haven’t given up as many big plays and he’s proven to be a more sure tackler than Moore.
In a Broncos secondary that starts three guys who are 38, 33, and 33 years old, having the youthful legs of Carter has been a great asset to this part of the field. As he gains the experience, those fresh legs will combine with a more mature brain to make the Broncos secondary that much better.