Can Kabion Ento Make his Way onto the Packers Final Roster?

Cornerback Kabion Ento (48) warms up during Green Bay Packers training camp at Ray Nitschke Field Wednesday, July 31, 2019, in Ashwaubenon, Wis.Gpg Packers Training Camp 073119 Jc0149
Cornerback Kabion Ento (48) warms up during Green Bay Packers training camp at Ray Nitschke Field Wednesday, July 31, 2019, in Ashwaubenon, Wis.Gpg Packers Training Camp 073119 Jc0149 /

Cornerback Kabion Ento has been a training camp darling each of the past two summers for the Green Bay Packers. However, he has remained on the practice squad each of those seasons. Is this the year he finally breaks through and onto the 53-man?

At the cornerback position, I see one to two roster spots being available this summer. We know who the first three roster spots belong to, and I also believe that Keisean Nixon will end up as the fourth cornerback, given that he provides the Packers with another needed slot option, has consistently filled that role in OTAs and minicamp, and he could be a special teams standout under Rich Bisaccia.

I also tend to believe that Shemar Jean-Charles will earn a roster spot as well. Again, he’s an added slot presence and played on 249 special teams snaps a season ago–although I wouldn’t call him a lock by any means.

So at the very least, there is one roster spot available at cornerback for the Packers, and potentially two, depending on how you feel about Jean-Charles. Also competing for a roster spot will be Rico Gafford, Kiondre Thomas, and Raleigh Texada.

Is this the year that Kabion Ento makes the Packers’ 53-man roster?

Ento is entering his fourth season with the Green Bay Packers. As a converted wide receiver coming out of Colorado in 2019, he was on the practice squad as a rookie, familiarizing himself with his new position.

In 2020, we began to see Ento flash over the summer; however, his season would be cut short due to a foot injury. This past year, Ento again made plays on the defensive side of the ball in practice and was often utilized as a gunner on special teams. Many roster predictions had him as one of the 53, but he again ended up on the practice squad.

Defensively during the 2021 preseason, Ento took most of his snaps on the boundary and allowed five receptions on eight targets but for only 8.2 yards per catch with an interception. He also led the Packers in special teams snaps as well as tackles, according to PFF ($$).

"“The biggest thing we’ve got to keep him doing is going forward,” said DB  Coach Jerry Gray last summer via SI. “Instead of getting the PBU, let’s start intercepting the ball. Let’s start doing those things, and that’s going to separate you from guys that may have gotten drafted. To me, coming in, you played wide receiver, has great ball skills, now go catch the ball. But you’ve got to knock the ball down first before you start intercepting.”"

Like many fringe roster players, special teams are going to be Ento’s path to making the 53-man roster. As long as everyone remains healthy, it’s very unlikely that he would see any defensive snaps this season.

While he took the most snaps last summer, led the team in tackles, and for what it’s worth, graded out well according to PFF, one area where Ento will really have to improve is his tackling reliability. Out of 12 tackle attempts last preseason, Ento would miss four of them — or 33%, which is a lot — and perhaps this may have been a big reason why he was left off the roster.

It’s also important to remember that what we see or hear about over the course of the summer is a very small part of what actually takes place. As I discussed recently in an article about Jake Hanson, he is the prime example of this. We rarely heard his name mentioned last summer and what we did see from him in the preseason wasn’t all that good–yet he made the final roster.

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The recipe for Ento to make his way onto the 53-man roster is certainly there. He’s entering his fourth season, has made plays on special teams as well as in general over the summer, and there is a roster spot or two available. Now it all comes down to how he performs these next few months and how much he has improved over the last year.