Another New Safety Starting This Week : Packers Insider

Another New Safety Starting This Week

September 25, 2009 by  
Filed under News

WHO?
Derrick Martin likely will start vs. Rams

By Tom Silverstein of the Journal Sentinel
Sept. 24, 2009

Green Bay — Derrick Martin has never started a National Football League game at safety, but in about 72 hours there’s a very good chance he will be lining up on defense with the Green Bay Packers at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis.

Sunday will mark only the three-week anniversary of Martin joining the Packers from the Baltimore Ravens in a trade for tackle Tony Moll, but a rash of injuries and personnel moves have vaulted him up the depth chart and into a pretty critical role for the Packers.

Packers coach Mike McCarthy hasn’t officially chosen between Martin and Jarrett Bush to replace the injured Atari Bigby (ankle) and the recently released Aaron Rouse, but it’s no secret Martin is the top choice. He has lined up with the starters in practice while Bush has been nursing a sore ankle that, when all is said and done, may not even be a factor in the decision.      

"I love playing in the box," Martin said. "I think playing in the box is like playing on kickoff returns. All you have to do is make the tackle in a small space

"I love playing in the box," Martin said. "I think playing in the box is like playing on kickoff returns. All you have to do is make the tackle in a small space."

The 5-foot-10, 198-pound Martin comes from a 3-4 defense in Baltimore where he played both cornerback and safety, and was fortunate to learn from perennial all-pro Ed Reed and veteran Jim Leonhard. His three career starts were all at cornerback, but he has been playing safety exclusively since the end of last season and is eager to show his new teammates he belongs.

“When I got here, I was happy they brought me here,” Martin said. “That showed me they had confidence in me. Then once they were able to put me into a game situation, that’s a great honor for me, especially in this green and gold. There have been so many people who have passed through this locker room who have won championships, I’m just happy to be out there.”

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