2014 first round pick Deone Bucannon was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals and they saw him as their future safety. They didn't use him at safety really at all in his rookie year. Instead, he played as a sixth defensive back in pass defense packages, but was lined up at linebacker.
His play there was almost a necessity because of the lack of speed at inside linebacker.
He played pretty well, collecting 81 tackles and two sacks.
However, head coach Bruce Arians said Bucannon "is going to play safety" this year.
"We know he can play dime linebacker, so he'll play safety until we find out we don't have the other guy (at linebacker)," he explained. "But we know we have the flexibility because we have so many quality safeties."
With the addition of Sean Weatherspoon and the potential return of Daryl Washington, it might not be necessary to have Bucannon play the linebacker position, as those two linebackers add lots of speed to the field. However, Arians said Bucannon will still probably play where he did in 2014.
"He'll still play the position because we're going to have that package," Arians said. "We like to have that much speed on the field."
The question will be how the starting roles play out. As of right now, the Cardinals have four safeties who can start between Bucannon, Rashad Johnson, Tony Jefferson and Tyrann Mathieu. Can Bucannon win a starting job to play more safety or will he end up playing more linebacker like in 2014?