In the same article that described Chase Coffman's progress, Geoff Hobson provided a great update on the Bengals future fullback in Fui Vakapuna. Like Coffman's success during Oklahoma Drills, Vakapuna's opponent comes with more weight, giving "two rousing efforts in the Oklahoma Drill against the defense’s most noted banger, SAM linebacker Rey Maualuga."
Interestingly enough, it was Hard Knocks that's making him more focused.
His pain was exposed to the HBO audience in the final episode of Hard Knocks as he waited all Cutdown day with his wife. What he didn’t see is that he was basically the club’s last cut and while the other rookie fullback, Chris Pressley, was signed to the practice squad, Vakapuna had to go to Arizona to hook on with a squad. He ended up back here midway through the season when Pressley bolted to Tampa Bay, but when he returned he wasn’t thinking about how TV had permanently chronicled his most disappointing moment in football.
“Watching Hard Knocks and hearing the coaches say, ‘Dang, you’re not physical,’ that got into my head,” Vakapuna said. “I think it was technique … it was more technique, mental toughness, and I didn’t adjust fast enough. This time around I was hungry.”
Along with Coffman, Vakapuna, Hobson writes, are both playing with something to prove. Hobson rightly, using a play on words with Hard Knocks, calling it Knocking Back Hard. And you have to love their growth in their sophomore year.