Packers 2017 Recap: S Jermaine Whitehead

One day, when Jermaine Whitehead is telling tall tales to his grandchildren about his playing days in the NFL, he’ll unleash an unbelievable story. It might sound ridiculous, but after a Google search, it checks out!

Jermaine Whitehead was the player who replaced Aaron Rodgers.

Well, not literally. And not at quarterback. But when the Packers placed Aaron Rodgers on injured reserve in October, it opened up a roster spot that went to the third-year safety from Auburn.

2017 Stats

  • Appeared in 10 games
  • 3 tackles, 1 pass defended
  • 1 rush, 7 yards

Expectations going into the season: Low
Expectations were: Met

Analysis: Whitehead sticks around in third pro season

It had to have felt good to be Packers safety Jermaine Whitehead after he successfully executed a fake punt against the Cleveland Browns late in the season.

It was a must-win game for Green Bay, and Whitehead helped keep a drive alive for a Packers offense that had struggled to move the ball with backup Brett Hundley.

It was also a nice moment for a player in his third season of professional football. Originally signed by the 49ers as an undrafted free agent in May 2015, Whitehead was waived at the end of training camp and spent four months on their practice squad.

The Baltimore Ravens then signed Whitehead to their roster for the season’s final two games, but he didn’t see the field. Baltimore cut him that May.

Then, Whitehead found a home in Green Bay in May 2016. Like his first season, he once again failed to make the initial 53-man roster and was cut in September. He spent the first two months on the practice squad, and was called up in late October.

When he made a crucial special teams error that allowed the Colts’ Jordan Todman to return the opening kickoff for a score, it was curtains on his 2016 season. The Packers cut Whitehead, and he returned to the practice squad.

The third time wasn’t the charm in 2017. He was cut by the Packers at the end of training camp – the fifth time in his career the safety had been released by a team. Whitehead joined the practice squad in Green Bay, and was promoted to the active roster in October. He would play all ten of the team’s remaining games.