Despite a strong performance at training camp, the Green Bay Packers didn’t make Kabion Ento part of their initial 53-man roster. According to Ryan Wood of the Green Bay Press-Gazette, the Packers are releasing Ento on Tuesday.
Ento was a promising cover corner. However, he did not have the necessary pre-requisite: tackling.
Ento was a former wide receiver in college and switched to defense when entering the professional scene. Ento was more comfortable avoiding tackles than making them. This made physical challenges difficult. Pro Football Focus reports that Ento missed four tackles in three preseason games. PFF gave him a tackling score lower than 30.0 for two of these games, which is almost inexcusable.
Ento would likely have been reserved for special teams if he had made the Packers roster. Ento showed flashes during the preseason, even scoring an interception against Houston Texans. But, he would never see the field as a defense player unless injuries to Green Bay’s cornerbacks were severed.
The Packers must have felt Ento’s shortcomings in tackler were too much to risk trying to use him on special teams. Green Bay had one of the worst special team groups in the NFL last season and is trying desperately to fix it.
Tackling was an issue last year as well as during the 2021 Preseason. PFF had 23 missed tackles as a team. Ento’s four missed tackles tied him with safety Innis Grantes. Gaines, along with Ento was also released Tuesday.
Green Bay preferred Isaac Yiadom to Ento, who was traded from the New York Giants. The third round pick in 2018, Yiadom, which will be used to add depth to Green Bay’s corner room, is expected to also contribute to special teams.
Ento’s time with Packers may not be over if there is a silver lining. If Ento is not signed by another team, he could be a candidate to join the practice squad. Ento could stay on the practice squad to improve his tackling and have the opportunity to sign up for the active roster in the future.