Green Bay Packers safety Jonathan Owens might end up being the team's Week 1 starter, but he won't forget the journey that he took to get there. The Packers signed Jonathan Owens early in 2023 free agency, just a few short years after the safety went undrafted and thought his career NFL might be over before it could even begin.

After no one took Owens in the 2018 NFL Draft, he suffered a torn ACL that cost him a chance to play in the 2018 NFL season. A half-decade later, the Packers' safety still used that as motivation as he competes for a starting spot in Green Bay's secondary.

“I'm undrafted, man. I take that with me everywhere I go,” Owens said, via “If anyone in the NFL knows, when you say you're undrafted, it's always a respect thing. I went to a Division II school right out of high school. I always carried a chip on my shoulder.”

Owens played for the Cardinals in the preseason but failed to make the roster in 2019. He joined the Houston Texans practice squad earlier during that season and eventually worked his way up the depth chart. The Packers signed Owens after he started all 17 games for the Texans in 2022.

“It was just about being patient and waiting for that opportunity and Houston gave me that opportunity on practice squad,” Owens said. “I was overjoyed to have that opportunity … and I'm still here, man, fighting. It was all part of the journey.”

Owens set career highs across the board last year. He had 125 tackles, four passes defensed and a sack.