The Denver Broncos made the safety position a real focus in the fifth round, zeroing in on the fact that the depth behind starters Justin Simmons and Kareem Jackson is pretty weak.
After taking Caden Sterns with their first pick of the fifth round, the Broncos added a second safety in Indiana’s Jamar Johnson.
Johnson was part of my Day 3 mock draft for the Broncos and he fits in perfectly with the team.
Johnson had seven interceptions during his time with the Hoosiers and he is a great cover safety, able to be the perfect single-high safety in defensive sets. He displays excellent anticipation and great ball skills.
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The major knock on his game, which is something Vic Fangio will look to get right quickly, is his ability as a tackler. Johnson is far too inconsistent as a tackler and needs to improve greatly in that area. That said, his coverage skills will give him a chance to be a star in the league.
This is another great value pick for the Broncos, who are filling holes in terms of roster depth with nearly every pick in this draft. Johnson is the perfect pick at this stage as the team could have to move on from Jackson, who is on a one-year deal, following the season.
Johnson could easily be groomed as his replacement so he’ll need to come in and soak up whatever he can as a rookie.
One fun fact about Johnson is that he is the only guy to intercept Justin Fields twice during Fields’ college career.
This is a pick that should earn high marks during post-draft analysis and if Johnson can become a good tackler at the next level, he could be a complete safety.