Kareem Jackson plays safety during Broncos camp

Print

One of the Denver Broncos' newest additions is taking on a different role so far this offseason.

Broncos coach Vic Fangio told reporters on Thursday that former Houston Texans cornerback Kareem Jackson has been playing safety during Denver's offseason program.

"We played him at safety in this camp, for the reason that there's more to learn at safety than there is at corner," Fangio said. "He's played much more corner in his career, so I wanted him to get more work in this camp -- all of his work -- at the safety position, to feel comfortable there."

The defensive back, who plays mainly at corner but took snaps at safety last season, came over from Houston in free agency, signing a three-year, $33 million deal with Denver.

Jackson, 30, is expected to start alongside veteran corner Chris Harris and nickelback Bryce Callahan in a retooled Broncos secondary; Denver lost Bradley Roby, Tramaine Brock and Darian Stewart in free agency.

Harris, though, is sitting out Denver's offseason program aside he enters the final year of his contract with the club, and there remains uncertainty at the safety position across from Justin Simmons.

The Broncos held their pre-draft veteran minicamp this week. Teams with new coaches are permitted one voluntary camp before the draft so they can work more closely with unfamiliar players. The minicamp allows coaches to be on the field (whereas other Phase One workouts have solely been with the training staff) and run a non-contact, no-padded practice.

This offered Denver's first-year coaching staff its first up-close look at new acquisitions like Jackson and Callahan and rising studs like Simmons in the secondary. The Broncos coaches already like what they see.

"It's pretty rare," Broncos defensive coordinator Ed Donatell said of Jackson's skill set. "The guy has played a lot of positions in the NFL. He started as a corner, a nickel and a safety. That's what we like. We just liked the way he played football and we knew we were building this defense. We'll plug him in where he best suits us."

It's not yet clear where Jackson will play most of the snaps in his first season in the Mile High City, but there's no question whether he'll be on the field.

"He'll be out there somewhere," Fangio said. "Where, I don't know. And I'm being honest with you."

Print