If Quin goes to Detroit, I think Michael Huff could bring the team the same versatility in Phillips' defensive scheme.
We see many safeties double as slot corners in sub packages but it’s very rare that a safety can make the move to a traditional cornerback role and have success. That’s exactly what Huff did in Week 3 when injuries forced the move to left cornerback. The Pittsburgh Steelers attacked him often (completing eight of the 11 balls thrown his way), but they were mostly of the short variety and Huff’s -3.1 grade in that game stemmed mostly from his three missed tackles.
After the tough first game, Huff continued to show improvement and seemed to make the position switch official when he picked up three passes defensed and an interception (and a +2.3 coverage grade) against the Atlanta Falcons’ wide receiver duo of Roddy White and Julio Jones in Week 6. Huff finished the season at cornerback and graded at +2.1 at his new home. It was an impressive performance as he performed admirably at a position where most safeties would be exploited.
When you add it all up, opponents completed only 53 percent of passes into Huff’s coverage and he finished with nine passes defensed and two interceptions. All of this came two years removed from Huff grading at +17.2 as our No. 2 safety in the league, and one year removed from his strong play when filling in as the team’s slot cornerback. He’s essentially succeeded in three different positions over a three-year period.
Any team looking to sign Huff will likely put him back at his more natural spot at safety, but his experience playing in the slot and on the outside will prove invaluable. In a league that covets versatility, Oakland’s releasing Huff may have vaulted him to the top of the free agent safety rankings.