Vic So'oto Returns: Can He Immediately Contribute to Packers' Pass Rush?

Chad LundbergCorrespondent IIISeptember 24, 2011

GREEN BAY, WI - SEPTEMBER 1: Vic So'oto #97 of the Green Bay Packers runs for a touchdown on an interception during a preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Lambeau Field on September 1, 2011 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)
Scott Boehm/Getty Images

Ever since Clay Matthews came into Green Bay in 2009, fans have been shouting out for a player to play opposite of Matthews to help aid in the pass rush. 

Players like Brad Jones, Erik Walden and Frank Zombo have all competed for the job, but none have really done enough to say they have what it takes to effectively pressure the QB on a consistent basis like Matthews has.

Enter Vic So'oto, who finally participated fully in practice Friday.

The idea of So'oto immediately contributing to the pass rush sounds crazy, but the preseason film says otherwise. He had 13 tackles, two forced fumbles, a pick-six and two-and-a-half sacks. Those are some amazing numbers for an undrafted free agent.

I should also mention that this wouldn't be the first time Packers fans have seen an undrafted free agent immediately make contributions; Sam Shields stepped in last season and solidified the third cornerback position.

Sam Shields primarily played wide receiver in college, but played cornerback in his final year at the University of Miami. Like Shields, So'oto switched from being a defensive end, to linebacker, and the results were almost immediate coming into Green Bay.

But it's not just his preseason play and the fact he reminds me so much of Shields that has me so excited.

With the Packers heading to Chicago for Week 3, So'oto couldn't have asked for a better time to make his NFL debut. The Bears have allowed a league-worst 11 sacks and 21 hits to quarterback Jay Cutler, in just two games thus far.

If Matthews can have a great day, then the Bears will be forced to draw more attention to him and less to So'oto, allowing So'oto to have his moment to shine.

All things considered, So'oto could have a very good week, and we may finally see someone who has the potential to contribute to the pass rush opposite to Matthews. 

Keep a close eye on this guy Packer fans.