We continue with Part 2. You can find Part 1, the offensive review, here.
|99||Yetur Gross-Matos||Junior||350 (59.8%)|
|18||Shaka Toney||Junior||333 (56.9%)|
|28||Jayson Oweh||RS Freshman||178 (30.4%)|
|34||Shane Simmons||Junior||155 (26.5%)|
|20||Adisa Isaac||Freshman||92 (15.7%)|
|49||Daniel Joseph||Junior||82 (14%)|
|98||Dan Vasey||Sophomore||6 (1%)|
For the sake of simplicity, all of Gross-Matos' snaps, including the ones he has taken from defensive tackle, are counted here. They have a three-deep here with the burning of Isaac's redshirt, and the playing time syncs up with that. There are no real surprises here, though it is notable that Oweh and Isaac are playing more as freshmen than their junior counterparts on the second and third team, respectively. Oweh is ahead of Simmons mostly because of passing downs; whenever Gross-Matos is moved inside to tackle, it is Oweh and Toney lined up at defensive end.
|54||Rob Windsor||Senior||361 (61.7%)|
|97||P.J. Mustipher||Sophomore||252 (43.1%)|
|55||Antonio Shelton||Junior||241 (41.2%)|
|53||Fred Hansard||Sophomore||123 (21%)|
|77||Judge Culpepper||RS Freshman||54 (9.2%)|
|90||Damion Barber||Sophomore||49 (8.4%)|
|27||Aeneas Hawkins||RS Freshman||14 (2.4%)|
|91||D'von Ellies||Freshman||8 (1.4%)|
|58||Evan Presta||Sophomore||6 (1%)|
|51||Hakeem Beamon||Freshman||4 (0.7%)|
Unlike defensive end, they have not been able to get to a three-deep. Trust is not there with Culpepper and Barber, and there are no Mustipher's waiting in the wings to break in as a true freshman with impact. Speaking of Mustipher, he comes off the bench, but plays more of a starter role. After the first series, he is much more frequently paired up with Windsor than Shelton is (usually paired with Hansard). Culpepper will have a big opportunity to demand more playing time this week against Minnesota, as Shelton is suspended.
|11||Micah Parsons||Sophomore||391 (66.8%)|
|6||Cam Brown||Senior||370 (63.2%)|
|36||Jan Johnson||Senior||266 (45.5%)|
|13||Ellis Brooks||Sophomore||188 (32.1%)|
|40||Jesse Luketa||Sophomore||150 (25.6%)|
|12||Brandon Smith||Freshman||100 (17.1%)|
|45||Charlie Katshir||RS Freshman||42 (7.2%)|
|10||Lance Dixon||Freshman||21 (3.6%)|
|50||Max Chizmar||Sophomore||18 (3.1%)|
Parsons and Brown have both served targeting ejections during the 2019 season, which slightly ate into each of their totals (Brown in particular played only three snaps in the opener, as the game was out of hand by the time he could return in the third quarter). Brooks and Luketa are getting solid playing time, while Smith's playing time is nothing to sneeze at, especially from a true freshman. Katshir has been superseded by Smith, and Dixon is likely to redshirt at this point.
|5||Tariq Castro-Fields||Junior||399 (68.2%)|
|29||John Reid||Senior||386 (66%)|
|2||Keaton Ellis||Freshman||146 (25%)|
|19||Trent Gordon||RS Freshman||104 (17.8%)|
|8||Marquis Wilson||Freshman||64 (10.9%)|
|9||Joey Porter Jr.||Freshman||37 (6.3%)|
|24||D.J. Brown||Sophomore||35 (6%)|
|3||Donovan Johnson||Sophomore||25 (4.3%)|
|25||Daequan Hardy||Freshman||2 (0.3%)|
Johnson appeared ready to compete for significant playing time heading into 2019, but a one-game suspension and then upper body injury against Pitt has limited him to just two games played so far this season. Reid is playing less thanks to Lamont Wade taking over the nickel slot from the safety position, which is a good thing, as he is more well rested when he is in the game. Ellis and Wilson are two true freshmen who have already burned their redshirts, as injuries have also felled Reid, Castro-Fields, and Gordon at various times. If those injuries continue, Porter could be a third to burn a redshirt, though they would probably try Brown first if they believe he can handle himself.
|38||Lamont Wade||Junior||425 (72.6%)|
|17||Garrett Taylor||Senior||418 (71.5%)|
|7||Jaquan Brisker||Junior||288 (49.2%)|
|26||Jonathan Sutherland||Sophomore||145 (24.8%)|
|35||Justin Neff||Sophomore||14 (2.4%)|
|37||Drew Hartlaub||Sophomore||11 (1.9%)|
|48||C.J. Holmes||Sophomore||5 (0.9%)|
|21||Tyler Rudolph||Freshman||2 (0.3%)|
This is the most Penn State has relied upon the reserves in its safety group in the James Franklin era, and it is not particularly close. Sutherland's playing time in the fourth safety role is actually up 4% from last season, when he primarily played as the team's third safety. But the main culprit is Wade's ascendance to the slot corner role, allowing him to play to his strengths in the secondary. With Wade in the slot, Brisker enters the game to play "center field" on the back end of the defense, where he has also done a good job.