The Green Bay Packers may have added Xavier McKinney in free agency, but the safety room is still in desperate need of more players from the NFL Draft. Currently, the Packers have Xavier McKinney, Anthony Johnson Jr, Zayne Anderson, and Tyler Coyle on their roster. Zayne Anderson and Tyler Coyle are probably just depth pieces with chances to play on special teams. Anthony Johnson Jr played some important downs last season but still has a ton of room to grow.

In other words, the signing of Xavier McKinney didn’t completely solve the Packers safety problem. It did help a bunch, but the Packers aren’t done yet. They will for sure look to the draft to fill out the safety room.

This leads me to this week’s draft spotlight, Cole Bishop out of Utah! If you missed last week’s spotlight, well click here and check out why I think Graham Barton is a Green Bay Packer.

Now, onto why I think Cole Bishop is a Green Bay Packer.

NFL Draft: Versatility

Safety Cole Bishop out of Utah is the definition of versatility. He played all over the place on the back end of that Utes defense. Post safety is where he showed a ton of explosiveness and quickness but he made the most plays close to the line of scrimmage as the box safety. I mean, he even played in the slot in nickel on occasion. Versatility is what he brings to the table. And that is what Brian Gutekunst and the Green Bay Packers are looking for in their safeties.

“It really helps your defense to be multiple and flexible so teams can’t get a bead on what you’re doing. So, in a perfect world, quite frankly, between the two safeties and the nickel, those three guys almost need to be interchangeable completely.” – Brian Gutekunst at the NFL Combine.

This just screams Cole Bishop because of his versatility and his experience at all three positions. I will say it is kinda weird that Gutekunst said this and then signed Keisean Nixon to such a large contract. Nixon was the starting slot corner for the Packers last year but struggled on multiple occasions. Pair this with the fact that he hasn’t played safety before and it really makes one wonder what the Packers plans are for Nixon this year. But I digress. Back to Bishop.

nfl draft cole bishop

NFL Draft: Athleticism

Us Packers fans love to mention how much the Packers value athleticism. I mean, we really love to talk about it this time of year and rightfully so. The Packers do value athleticism and have a type when it comes to the NFL Draft. Cole Bishop is the Packers type. He scored a 9.82 RAS (relative athletic score) and met the minimum height and weight requirements that seem to be the Packers type.

cole bishop ras

Cole Bishop’s athleticism wasn’t just shown during the NFL combine. His athleticism is very much apparent in his tape. He flies all over the field. And here is the best part: he isn’t just moving around really fast like a chicken with its head cut off. No. He is moving with purpose. During his three year career at Utah, he amassed 197 total tackles while only missing on thirty. This is outstanding and why many people believe that he would be an incredible box safety. Although he would be an incredible free safety, too. Ya know, that versatility we’ve been talking about.

To go along with those tackles, Cole Bishop had 21.5 tackles for a loss, 7.5 sacks, four fumble recoveries, one forced fumble, twelve pass breakups, and three interceptions. The 7.5 sacks are incredible for a safety while the interceptions are kind of underwhelming.

When Could The Packers Draft Cole Bishop?

Bishop, ever since the Senior Bowl and the NFL combine, has been flying up draft boards and everyone is all over the place on when he will go in the NFL Draft. PFF has him as their 120th ranked player on their big board while other places have him going anywhere between round two and round five.

The Packers have a need at the safety position and Cole Bishop fills that need. Green Bay needs to get their man and I wouldn’t be upset at all if they drafted him in the second round.

Bishop is the total package. He has the perfect size and athleticism that the Packers look for in their safeties and to blend it all together perfectly, he is incredibly smart with great instincts.

Imagine a world where Cole Bishop and Xavier McKinney are the Green Bay Packers safeties. This is what Brian Gutekunst was referencing back at the NFL Combine. Those two could be interchangeable at strong safety and free safety (box safety and post safety). This in itself would cause offenses headaches because the Packers could hide coverages really well due to their safeties being interchangeable.

Cole Bishop is the perfect safety for this need and for Jeff Hafley’s defense.

Because of these reasons and many more:

Cole Bishop, you are a Green Bay Packer.

Go Pack Go!


Damon is a diehard, fully-immersed cheesehead who currently lives in southern Missouri. He teaches at a local high school and has a family YouTube channel about all things Packers. You can follow him on twitter at @packersfamily and on YouTube at The Packers Family.