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Colts 2016 player preview: Safety T.J. Green

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Indianapolis Colts will report to training camp on July 26 with their 90-man roster, which will be cut down to 53 players by the end of the preseason.  To pass the time until camp, we're taking a look at every player on the Colts' 90-man roster.  Today, we're looking at safety T.J. Green.

Who is he?

The Colts this year used their second round pick on Clemson safety T.J. Green, bringing him in with the 57th overall pick after trading down with the Packers.  The Colts insisted they would have taken Green with their original pick too, and it's a pick that got Chuck Pagano particularly excited.  The safety spent three years at Clemson, where he played in 38 games and started 16 -€” including 15 starts last year during Clemson's run to the National Championship Game.  Last year, Green recorded 130 tackles (third-most on the team), five tackles for loss, three passes defensed, two forced fumbles, and a sack.  He began his career at Clemson as a wide receiver, but after the 2013 season he made the switch to safety.  He has a bit of experience as a returner, too, as he returned 24 kickoffs in college for an average of 21 yards per return.  Many people were surprised to see him enter the NFL Draft this year after his junior season, as he could have stood to improve some more in his senior season.  The Colts saw his physical talent and potential, however, and decided to select him in the second round.

What is his role?

Like a number of the Colts' draft picks, T.J. Green was a pick made very much with the future in mind.  He could indeed have used another year in school, but the reality is that he's now in the NFL and working with the Colts' coaching staff.  That should help him to continue to develop, but it's important to not expect too much out of him right away.  He likely won't be competing with Mike Adams or Clayton Geathers for the starting safety spots, and the Colts have already said that while they will be open to utilizing Green's versatility, he's a safety.  His role this year is likely to provide depth at safety and to contribute on special teams.  Then, perhaps even next year, he will be in line to step in and replace Adams as the starter.  The bottom line: Green is a player with plenty of physical gifts and potential to develop, and he could wind up as a starter down the road for the Colts.  I just don't expect that to come this year.

What are his chances?

He'll make the roster, but he very likely won't be starting.