Broncos DB Kareem Jackson acclimating to new team, system .. and jersey number

Living in a new city? A manageable transition for Kareem Jackson.

Playing safety instead of cornerback? Same.

Leading a semi-rebuilt secondary? Ditto.

But wearing No. 22 for the Broncos?

“It’s cool, but it’s a little weird when I look at the film,” said Jackson, who wore No. 25 with the Houston Texans. “It’s new to me, but I’m looking forward to wearing it.”

And Broncos fans should look forward to seeing how Jackson is utilized by coach Vic Fangio and defensive coordinator Ed Donatell. During the voluntary minicamp last month and Monday’s first organized team activity, Jackson was at safety in the base defense alongside Justin Simmons. But Jackson can also play cornerback (outside and in the slot).

“I got a little bit of experience at safety this time last year,” Jackson said. “And even (in 2017), I played safety in certain situations. I’ve got enough experience to get out there and be able to pick up the system and play at a high level.”

Jackson will get cornerback work throughout OTAs and the mandatory minicamp. When the season starts, his job description could toggle between safety and cornerback depending on the opponent. A big two-tight end opponent? Maybe Jackson is a safety. A three-receiver base offense? Jackson is probably a corner.

“For me, it’s all about changing my mindset,” Jackson said of when he switches positions. “I’m in a new defensive scheme and in the film room, I’m studying three different spots right now. Once I go back to corner, it will be like riding a bike.”

The Broncos view Jackson’s versatility as a luxury and they paid him accordingly in March. His time in Houston ended when he signed a three-year, $33 million contract with the Broncos.

Jackson, 31, started 124 of 132 games in nine years for the Texans. He began 2018 at safety but injuries forced him to return to cornerback and his 17 pass break-ups tied a career high.

The Broncos could view Plan A as Chris Harris and Bryce Callahan as their base package cornerbacks and Jackson as a hybrid safety/corner. Minus Harris, who has skipped the voluntary offseason program in a contract dispute, Callahan and De’Vante Bausby have been the first-team corners.

Jackson, Callahan and Bausby are part of a secondary overhaul that started with the departures of safety Darian Stewart and Nos. 2-3 cornerbacks Bradley Roby and Tramaine Brock.

Harris would be the vocal leader, but he’s not around. Enter Jackson.

“Going into Year 10 and accepting the safety role last year and also this year, I definitely have to be vocal because everybody is counting on you to make the calls and get guys in the right spots,” Jackson said.

Jackson has 16 interceptions and three fumble recoveries in his career and is already impressed with Fangio’s scheme.

“Very different (than Houston’s),” Jackson said. “They’re asking the safeties to do a lot of different things (with the Broncos). But at the same time, we’re being put in great position to make plays.”

Said Callahan: “He’s a veteran and has been in the game. He’s getting to help the young guys with knowledge and what he’s seeing.”

Footnotes. The Broncos signed fifth-round linebacker Justin Hollins to a four-year rookie contract on Tuesday. … Reserve offensive lineman Nico Falah sustained a season-ending torn Achilles late in Monday’s OTA during a conditioning drill. Falah was placed on injured reserve, creating an open roster spot.

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