Earlier today we took a look at a recent draft pick from 2011 who had some decent success last season and looks locked into a starting position to begin 2012. Let's continue today with the complete opposite end of the spectrum - a player drafted in 2010 with lots of talent but an injury that was holding him back - and who is so far best known for one play and one play only - the last player to ever sack Brett Favre.
Tonight, we're discussing Corey Wootton and what he needs to do to retain his hold on a roster spot.
Wootton's a fourth round draft pick appearing in thirteen games over his two seasons in the NFL, and his lone sack came in 2010 against the Vikings. That so far is a far cry from the player the Bears thought they were drafting - a player with first-round talent in the fourth that fell due to an injury. He continued battling injuries all though last season and couldn't get on the field consistently, so much so the Bears had to resort to a combination of Nick Reed, Mario Addison and Chauncey Davis to spell Julius Peppers and Israel Idonije, and the Bears continued the turnover at the position with the drafting of Shea McClellin.
So Wootton is no doubt under a lot of pressure to perform this season, else he could be one of the ones to lose a roster spot this season. What does he need to do?
He can start by staying healthy and producing throughout preseason, first and foremost. Wootton can't quite assume he'll have the luxury of draft-pick protection as was the case under Jerry Angelo. There is most definitely talent here, but Wootton has to start showcasing it beyond displaying the ability to take injuries on special teams. Six tackles and one sack over two years don't retain a roster spot - he has to show better to hold on. If he can show even a hint of the promise he was drafted with, he'll be fine, but if he can't, it'll be hard to see him on the roster in 2012.