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Donte Whitner lists Jairus Byrd NFL's second-best safety

By Tim Graham

Former Buffalo Bills safety Donte Whitner visited the NFL Network's "NFL AM" crew this morning, and one of the segments asked him to name the five best safeties in the league.

The top two on Whitner's list are former teammates:

  • 1. Dashon Goldson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • 2. Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills
  • 3. Earl Thomas, Seattle Seahawks
  • 4. Ed Reed, Houston Texans
  • 5. Troy Polamalu, Pittsburgh Steelers

Whitner played alongside Byrd for two seasons in Buffalo's secondary.

"He's a guy that's going to force fumbles," Whitner said. "He's going to always be around the football. He has very good hands, very good instincts.

"I'd say that if he's not No. 2, he's really 1-B."


Donte Whitner | Jairus Byrd
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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham |

Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan |

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski |