With 25 spots remaining on the roster after the Offensive and Special Teams selection and 36 players vying for those spots, competition should be high on the defensive side of the ball in camp. Add in the fact that there are about 20 locks to make the team and the competition is even stronger.
DL – Gaines Adams, Chris Bradwell, Jarrett Buie, Rashad Duncan, Louis Holmes, Chris Hovan, Roy Miller, Dre Moore, Kyle Moore, Greg Peterson, Ryan Sims, Stylez G White, Jimmy Wilkerson
Gaines, Hovan, Roy Miller, Kyle Moore, Ryan Sims, Stylez G White and Jimmy Wilkerson are locks in my opinion. I think that leaves one roster spot open for a DT. That battle comes down to Dre Moore and Greg Peterson. Moore seems to be a much better fit for the kind of mauling Dline that new DC Jim Bates prefers. Peterson was called a poor mans Warren Sapp when he came out of college and was more of a pass rushing threat in the middle, theoretically. He has never gotten much run, so judging him at this point would be tough. I’m going to go with Dre as the 8th Dlineman.
Prediction: LDE1-Jimmy Wilkerson, RDE1-Gaines Adams, DT1-Chris Hovan, DT2-Ryan Sims, DT3-Roy Miller, DT4-Dre Moore, RDE2-Stylez G White, LDE2-Kyle Moore
15 Roster Spots Remaining
LB – Quincy Black, Angelo Crowell, Geno Hayes, Adam Heyward, Niko Koutouvides, Matt McCoy, Jermaine Phillips, Barrett Ruud, Rod Wilson
Quincy Black, Angelo Crowell, Geno Hayes, Adam Heyward, Jermaine Phillips, Barrett Ruud are alll locks to make the team. I think we will probably carry at least 8 LB’s just due to the fact that LB’s/CB’s are your most important Special Teams contributors. Matt McCoy and Niko Koutouvides both excel on Special Teams so they are going to make the roster. That leaves one LB in camp, Rod Wilson fighting for a potential Special Teams spot.
Prediction: SLB1-Quincy Black, MLB1-Barrett Ruud, WLB1-Jermaine Phillips, SLB2-Angelo Crowell, MLB2-Adam Heyward, WLB3-Geno Hayes, SPTLB-Matt McCoy, SPTLB-Niko Koutouvides
7 Roster Spots Remaining
DB – Will Allen, Kyle Arrington, Ronder Barber, EJ Biggers, CJ Byrd, Torrie Cox, Tanard Jackson, Elbert Mack, Marshall McDuffie, Donte Nicholson, Sabby Piscatelli, Aqib Talib, DeAngelo Willingham
Barber, Jackson, Mack, Piscatelli, and Talib are locks. That leaves 2 spots open. One would most likely need to be a backup safety, although we do have Jermaine Phillips as insurance for a backup SS spot. I think that spot goes to Will Allen who is also a great special teams player. That leaves one open cornerback spot and the recently drafted Kyle Arrington who has been impressive in mini-camps will narrowly beat out the always injured Torrie Cox.
Prediction: CB1-Aqib Talib, CB2-Ronde Barber, CB3-Elbert Mack, CB4-Kyle Arrington, FS1-Tanard Jackson, SS1-Sabby Piscatelli, S2-Will Allen
That’s it for the roster guys. Let me know what you think.