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Packers’ Safety Pool Gets Deeper With Release of All-Pro Jordan Poyer

The Buffalo Bills released former All-Pro Jordan Poyer, who has some rather significant history with Packers defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley.
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GREEN BAY, Wis. – For Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst, the hunt for a veteran starting safety gets easier by the day.

The Buffalo Bills on Wednesday released veteran Jordan Poyer. While Poyer will turn 33 on April 25 – Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft – he was a first-team All-Pro in 2021, when he had five interceptions, and a Pro Bowler in 2022, when he had four interceptions.

Wrestling with cap issues, the Bills released Poyer to create $5.7 million of cap space, according to

With what could be a nice wad of salary-cap cash, Gutekunst might be looking more for a long-term option at safety, as was the case in 2019, when he signed Adrian Amos. However, signing Poyer along with a younger safety would alleviate Gutekunst of the pressure to grab a safety with one of his five picks in the first three rounds of the draft.

There are a lot of quality veteran options. Along with a bumper crop of unrestricted free agents this offseason, the Bears released Eddie Jackson, the Eagles released Kevin Byard, the Jaguars parted ways with Rayshawn Jenkins, the Saints got rid of Marcus Maye and the Seahawks dumped Quandre Diggs and Jamal Adams. 

Poyer makes it seven accomplished veterans on the street free-agent market.

Poyer was a seventh-round pick by the Eagles in 2013. He didn’t last in Philadelphia, but he emerged as a starter in Cleveland from 2014 through 2016. New Packers defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley was the defensive backs coach for the Browns in 2014 and 2015.

Poyer’s career took off after he signed a four-year deal with the Bills in 2017. He picked off five passes in 2017, four more in 2018 and a total of four in 2019 and 2020. Upon hitting age 30, he had the combined nine interceptions and 17 passes defensed in 2021 and 2022.

Last year, he started 16 games and broke up four passes, forced one fumble and had his fourth season of 100-plus tackles. He allowed just one touchdown, according to Pro Football Focus.

Of his 24 career interceptions, one came at Lambeau Field against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in 2018.

Poyer is one of the best tacklers at the position. Of 74 safeties who played 500 snaps in 2023, according to PFF, he ranked fifth in missed-tackle percentage (seven misses; 6.5 percent) and 45th in passer rating (99.2).

Of his 987 snaps, 313 came at free safety, 419 came in the box and 197 came in the slot. Of 49 safeties who played at least 75 slot-coverage snaps, he ranked 10th with 0.66 yards allowed per coverage snap and 16th with 13.2 snaps per reception.