Category Archives: Vic So’oto

12

November

Packers News: Bulaga to I.R., So’oto to 53-man roster

Packers tackle Bryan Bulaga

Packers tackle Bryan Bulaga

The Green Bay Packers announced Monday that left tackle Bryan Bulaga had been placed on the season-ending injured reserve with a hip injury.

Bulaga suffered the injury against the Arizona Cardinals when he landed awkwardly. The early diagnosis wasn’t optimistic, and some had speculated immediately that Bulaga’s season may be over.

Losing Bulaga leaves the Packers shorthanded on the offensive line. T.J. Lang will shift over to right tackle, while Evan Dietrich-Smith will take Lang’s normal spot at left guard. For the rest of the season, the Packers’ offensive line–at full strength–will consist of Marshall Newhouse, Dietrich-Smith, Jeff Saturday, Josh Sitton and Lang.

Through ten weeks of the NFL season, the Packers have allowed 29 sacks–tied for second-most in the NFL.

To fill Bulaga’s roster spot, the Packers have signed outside linebacker Vic S’oto. The move gives Packers some depth at outside linebacker, as Frank Zombo was the team’s only available backup prior to So’oto’s signing.

So’oto played in seven games for the Packers last season and was in training camp with the team this summer. After appearing in four games with the Oakland Raiders this season, he was let go. So’oto, again, will wear No. 97 with the team.

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Marques is a Journalism student, serving as the Sports Editor of UW-Green Bay\'s campus newspaper The Fourth Estate and a Packers writer at Jersey Al\'s AllGBP.com. Follow Marques on Twitter @MJEversoll.

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31

August

Final 2012 Packers Roster Cuts and Roster Moves Announced

Approximately 20 minutes after roster cuts had to be submitted to the league office, the Packers’ final three moves became known.

The Packers waived QB BJ Coleman, placed OT Derek Sherrod on IR/PUP and LB Vic So ‘oto on IR (he suffered an ankle injury in last night’s game)

View the complete list of all the Packers roster moves here:

 

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Jersey Al Bracco is the founder and editor of AllGreenBayPackers.com, and the co-founder of Packers Talk Radio Network. He can be heard as one of the Co-Hosts on Cheesehead Radio and is the Green Bay Packers Draft Analyst for Drafttek.com.

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28

August

Packers Stock Report: Roster Bubble Edition

Jamari Lattimore

Packers LB Jamari Lattimore is rising.

It’s time to bring back the Packers stock report.

I’m back in my blogging chair after spending three booze-fueled days and nights in Madison, Wis. I gained about 10 pounds and reduced the functionality of my liver by about 7 percent. A typical weekend in Madison.

The only way to get my body back to where it was pre-Madison is to type a couple hundred words about the Packers. For the first Packers stock report of the 2012 season, I’m going to focus on players who entered training camp on the roster bubble. There will be plenty of stock reports dedicated to guys like Aaron Rodgers and Charles Woodson during the season, but for now, let’s focus on the guys who may or may not make the team.

Rising

Dezman Moses
The buzz about Moses grew louder during OTAs and he’s lived up to that hype during training camp. Perhaps hype is a poor word choice. I don’t think anyone is expecting Moses to come in and be an All-Pro. But he looks like a wild-card type of player, someone that could show flashes of brilliance and deliver production from a roster spot that you originally didn’t think would yield much of anything. Whichever word you want to use, Moses is definitely rising.

Donald Driver
You’re probably saying to yourself, “Wait a minute. I thought you said this stock report was only going to be about players on the roster bubble.” Why yes, I did say that. And Driver was definitely on the bubble before camp. I have no doubts about that. I also have no doubts that Driver has played well enough to secure a spot on the Packers roster. That makes him rising in my book.

Jamari Lattimore
We haven’t heard all that much about Lattimore, but in the film I’ve watched of his preseason, I like what I see out of him in pass coverage. I like D.J. Smith, but I can see him getting overwhelmed in pass coverage. Lattimore gets good depth on his drops and looks fluid when running in coverage down the middle of the field.

Steady

There is no steady category when we’re talking about players that may or may not make the team. You’re either rising (making the team), or falling (on your way out the door).

23

July

Packers Training Camp Battles: Will Anyone Stand Up to Perry at OLB?

Nick Perry

Packers OLB Nick Perry

When the Packers open training camp, we will hear plenty about Nick Perry making the shift from a hand-on-the-ground college defensive end to a stand-up NFL outside linebacker.

No doubt, there will be plenty of adjustments that Perry needs to make as he transitions. But don’t let that fool you, Perry is the player the Packers want to rush the quarterback opposite of Clay Matthews.

There is no need to be overly concerned about Perry not yet being a well-rounded OLB. The Packers should focus most of their efforts on making Perry the best possible pass rusher that he can be. What deficiencies he may have in pass coverage or other areas can be developed over time.

If Perry turns out to be the pass rusher the Packers think he can be, the other aspects of playing OLB will come to him. Meantime, Dom Capers can create sub packages and scheme as necessary to maximize Perry’s talents and mask the undeveloped portions of his game.

After Perry and Matthews, things get interesting at OLB.

Erik Walden
The Packers brought Walden back even though he disappeared down the stretch last season after getting arrested. Most people have written Walden off, but I say not so fast.

There’s a reason the Packers brought him back. If they didn’t think he was any good, they wouldn’t have resigned him. I’m not saying Walden is going to be a breakout player, but don’t immediately dismiss him.

He’s had his moments with the Packers, including three sacks in the 2010 season finale and a two-game stretch before getting arrested last season where he totaled 15 tackles and a sack.

Bringing Walden back was a good decision. If he plays like he did before the arrest, the Packers have a solid depth player. If he looks finished, the Packers can just cut him and move on with their lives.

Dezman Moses
This year’s buzz player, Moses made everybody take notice of him during OTAs. His 20-yard shuttle and 3-cone drill times at the combine were better than Perry’s, and he was a very productive college player.

Ted Thompson seems to always find an undrafted free agent or two that sticks around. A few even make a major impact (see Sam Shields in 2010).

16

June

Vic So’oto: Just Another Flavor Of The Month?

LB Vic So'oto

Packers LB Vic So'oto intercepts the ball against the Chiefs in the 2011 preseason

Every preseason, it seems like there is one previously unknown player on the Packers roster that stands out.   There is that one player whom fans love to watch and beg the coaches to play during the regular season.

In 2011, that player was linebacker Vic So’oto a rookie from BYU that went undrafted.   At BYU, So’oto was the true definition of a ‘football player’ by playing tight end and defensive end.  It’s not hard to see why So’oto would be so warmly embraced by Packer fans.

He did miss the majority of the 2006 and 2008 seasons due to injury, however, and given the Packers’ infamous luck with injury prone draft picks it is no surprise that So’oto went unselected on draft day last year.

As the saying goes, one man’s trash is another’s treasure.  In July, the Packers signed So’oto as an undrafted free agent.  Hoping to land a roster spot, he put on a show in the preseason against the Chiefs starters with 1.5 sacks and an interception before a nagging back injury that hampered him for most of the 2011 regular season.

You know what they say with the NFL fans when it comes to rookie players.  The first impression is always the strongest.

As the Packers pass rush continued to be non-existent, fans began to clamor for So’oto.  The lofty expectations placed on him by fans made you think he was another Clay Matthews.

The chance never came.  However, entering the 2012 offseason healthy and with the Packers desperately seeking a pass rush it seemed that So’oto would finally get his chance to shine in OTAs and mini-camp.

Then Ted Thompson went and drafted USC linebacker/defensive end Nick Perry in the first round and proceeded to load up on defenders in the 2012 NFL Draft.

This clouds the picture for So’oto going into training camp and arguably could doom his career prospects in Green Bay.  It’s a near certainty Perry will line up opposite of Matthews in a decent chunk of defensive formations, so where does that leave So’oto.

19

March

2012 Packers Position Group Analysis: Linebackers

Packers Linebacker Clay Matthews III

Packers Linebacker Clay Matthews III

Packers Linebackers: We’re back with the second of this series where we’ll examine each Packers position group as it currently exists. We’ll be addressing three main points from the Packers’ perspective: where we are, where we want to go and what we need to do to get there.

Where are we now:

Here are the current suspects:

Clay Matthews (1st round)
A.J. Hawk (1st round)
Desmond Bishop (6th round)
Brad Jones (7th round)
D.J. Smith (6th round)
Erik Walden (6th round – is a free agent)
Robert Francois (undrafted)
Frank Zombo (undrafted)
Vic So ‘oto (undrafted)
Jamari Lattimore (undrafted)

Much like the defensive line spot, Ted Thompson has built this position group from the bottom of the draft up. Eight out of ten players came from the 6th round or later. I suppose that’s a bit of a necessity in today’s salary-capped NFL, especially with salaries for offensive skill players going through the roof. But it’s still a bit startling when you examine a roster closely and really see how a team is built.

Let’s start with Clay Matthews: Matthews could have been nicknamed “Fast and Furious” his first two seasons, taking the league by storm with 23.5 sacks. While sacks get the attention, getting stops in the run game are almost of the same value to coaches. To that end, Matthews was certainly lacking. There’s no better evidence than the now famous sound byte from the Steelers’ sideline during the Super Bowl. A Steelers coach is heard telling his offense they’re going to run at Matthews all day, because all he wants to do is rush the passer – he doesn’t want to play the run.

2011 was a different type of year for Matthews, but it was still a success. Gone were the high sack numbers, as Matthews was double-teamed an average of 37% of the time in 2011, and had practically no pass rush help to draw attention away from him. But other parts of his game solidified. He improved both in pass coverage and against the run, intercepting three passes, leading the team in tackles for loss and was only charged with 7 missed tackles on the year (according to Bob McGinn). So while many fans asked “what’s wrong with Matthews?”, the answer of course was, “nothing.” All he did was become a more complete player.

22

February

Packers Stock Report: 2011 End of Season Full Roster Edition

Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers stock fell a bit during the playoff loss to the Giants, but it remains high heading into next season.

The Giants beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl and there will be no more meaningful football games for the next six months. That’s six months to reflect on how a team that lost twice to the Redskins during the regular season could go on to knock off the mighty Packers in the playoffs and keep rolling all the way to the Lombardi Trophy.

Depressing.

It’s hard to find a silver lining, but if you’re searching for one, take a few minutes and look over the Packers roster. It’s pretty good. Go ahead and cross off some of the players you think won’t be around next season, and it’s still pretty good. This team is going to contend again next season, and probably for the next couple of seasons after that. At least Packers fans have something to look forward to.

We’ve spent the last couple of weeks at AllGBP.com evaluating and grading every player on the Packers roster. Those report cards are done now, and it’s time to put this season in the rearview mirror.

To get started, I put together a full roster stock report based on each player’s status heading into next season. To categorize each player, I used my own opinion mixed with how I think the Packers view that player.

For example, Donald Driver played well in the playoff loss. If the Packers beat the Giants and hosted the NFC Championship, I’d probably list Driver as rising in that week’s stock report. But since the Packers season is over, and I don’t think Ted Thompson brings Driver back, I put Driver in the falling category.

You get the idea, so without further delay, here we go:

Rising

QB Aaron Rodgers
Finding motivation is never a problem for Rodgers, but the Packers early playoff exit should give the MVP even more incentive to come out fired up in 2012.

LB Desmond Bishop
Watching Bishop motor his way through games was one of the few enjoyable aspects of this season’s defense.

T Bryan Bulaga
Bulaga took a step forward in 2011 and might take a giant step sideways to play left tackle next season.

WR/KR Randall Cobb
Thanks to Cobb, kick and punt returns became fun again.