Name: Shakir Soto
Position: Defensive Tackle
Q: If you could describe your style of play in 3 words, what would they be?
Shakir: Physical, fast, relentless.
Q: How are you going to train/prepare this offseason in preparation for the draft or other pro opportunities?
Shakir: I began my training at Chip Smith until pro day and now training at the University of Pittsburgh up until the draft.
Q: If you could compare yourself to one current or former NFL player who would it be and why?
Shakir: Aaron Donald, I played along side him my freshman year and he is a beast, we are both fast powerful guys and once I made my transition to defensive tackle my senior year, he was a player that I tried to copy because he is very successful at defensive tackle.
Q: When you are studying film, what do you focus on or look for?
Shakir: When looking at myself, I look at my footwork, pad level and hands. I also check my effort to make sure I finish plays and see what I could do different to make myself a better player. When studying opponents, I look for things they do that gives away what they are doing, their tendencies and when studying the o-line I look at where their feet are and where they like to place their hands. I also look at their alignment cause that can show where they are going.
Q: What separates you from other players at your position?
Shakir: I am more of an athletic defensive tackle and I move a lot better than most defensive tackles.
Q: What kind of abilities would you bring to a team that will stand out both on and off the field?
Shakir: I bring speed to the defensive tackle position so that is a plus for teams that like to move their tackles with stunts and side to side movements. I am also capable of playing defensive end. When it comes to off the field, I am a person you never have to worry about that doing anything bad and I like to go to schools and talk to the kids about them doing whatever they want in life and could be successful as long as they work hard everyday and chase their dreams.
Q: What is your final pitch/sell to NFL and other pro league scouts?
Shakir: I am the type of player that will do anything it takes to help my team win, I’ve played in all of my college games and some were through injuries, but I wouldn’t let that stop me from competing along side my brothers. Also, I will make any sacrifice necessary for the team to put the team in a better position overall. While I was in college, I played defensive end for the first three years and was asked to gain 45-50 pounds(240 to 291 played at 285) and move to defensive tackle and that’s exactly what I did for the team, I didn’t complain at all. I took the opportunity and made the most of it and was very successful at a position I never played before.