Originally posted by CorvaNinerFan:
Right-o NineFan...for all his size and strength, Sopoaga still hasn't become the monster DL we'd all hoped for. It just seems like he can't get technique to compliment his strength. Best thing he has going for him is the ability play both DE and NT. With youngsters like Balmer and Jean-Francois, he'll either have to knuckle down or he'll lose PT because they'll progress and he'll still just be a very strong guy who's not that effective. Count Evans in the mix, too, because he's a solid vet DE who'll be a good player for us. My take...let Soap and Franklin rotate, keeping a fresh NT in there. Leave DE for Balmer, Evans, J-F, J. SMith and Ray Mac.
I suspect this is why Soap was playing NT late into the Raiders game. Since there is so much rotation that takes place along the DL, they have probably realized that we have no backup NT and are looking at Soap to fill that role.
I can see him starting the game at DE, then periodically moving over to NT. Balmer probably can't handle the full load right now. But between him and Evans, they can probably form an adequate backup platoon.