Letroy Guion, DT
(6035, 307, 5.12-5.38) Florida State
Notes: Born 6/21/87. Last name is pronounced GUY-in. Nicknamed "Baloo" from the Disney Classic "The Jungle Book" for his burly, yet unassuming and simple demeanor. Played four years of varsity football at Bradford High School in Starke, Fla., where he helped lead his team to the state semifinals in each of his last three years. Named the Gainesville Sun Player of the Year as a senior. An all-state first team and all-area selection following his junior and senior seasons. Participated in the Califlorida Bowl with several members of Florida State's 2005 signing class. Was the Class 2A Mr. Football runner-up as a senior. Totaled 131 tackles, 21 tackles-for-loss, 12 sacks and 11 forced fumbles as a senior.
College: Heavily recruited out of high school, Guion chose Florida State over Georgia, Tennessee, Iowa and Florida. Backup behind Andre Fluellen, playing in 10 games with one start, as a true freshman in 2005; finished with 10 tackles and 1.5 tackles-for-loss. Started the final 5 of 12 games in which he played (missed one game with a sprained ankle) in 2006 as part of a rotation with Alex Boston and Budd Thacker; posted 25 tackles, 4 TFL, 0.5 sacks and one forced fumble. Started 8 of 12 games games in which he played (held out of Music City Bowl game for unspecified team violations) in 2007 as an injury replacement for Fluellen; posted 31 tackles, 6.5 TFL, 1 sack, 1 pass deflection and 2 fumble recoveries. Enrolled in FSU's undergraduate studies program.
Workout numbers: Ran better in campus workout than at the combine, where he was slowed by a quad injury. Posted a 1.79 10-yard dash, 4.50 20-yard dash, 5.20 40-yard dash, 4.50 short shuttle, 7.41 three-cone drill, 30-inch vertical jump, 8'10" broad jump and did 26 reps at 225 pounds.
Pro: Selected by the Vikings in the fifth round (No. 152 overall) with a pick acquired from Philadelphia as part of the team's move to trade up in Round 2.
Positives: Good athlete. Has a big frame and can get even bigger. Has a thick lower body with very long arms to neutralize blockers when he uses proper technique. Plays hard and competes. Has a quick first step off the ball. Can be disruptive and penetrate gaps. Moves well down the line and can close on the ball. Decent bull rusher. Shows some short-area burst and closing speed. Willing to work and will put in the time in the weight room.
Negatives: Was never overly productive or much of an impact player in college. Needs technique work; will play too high and negate his strength at the point of attack. Lacks the base and lower-body strength to handle double-team blocks. Average hand use. Far from refined as a pass rusher. Hasn't always shown good judgment off the field.
Summary: Underclassman who is still very young and flashes of a lot of upside potential, particularly in the type of one-gap, penetrating scheme the Vikings deploy on defense. Needs to show enough in training camp to make the team and will need some time to develop, but could be a good player if he does. Will be a challenge for defensive line coach Karl Dunbar to develop, but his track record for doing just that is good.
What they said:
"We got a big defensive tackle, under tackle or nose guard [in Guion]. He's a big banger from a little small country town in Florida. Got a chance to spend some time with him, [defensive line coach Karl Dunbar] did and Brendan Daly [defensive line assistant] did down at the combine." - Vikings head coach Brad Childress
"Showed some signs when given the opportunity to start in place of the injured Andre Fluellen, but could take few years to get acclimated to the pro game." - Nolan Nawrocki, Pro Football Weekly
"Guion is a one-gap defensive tackle with an explosive first step who can make plays in the backfield. He plays to the whistle and flashes the ability to shed blocks quickly, but doesn't have great size. He struggles to anchor when teams run at him." - ESPN.com
"Guion is raw and inconsistent but he flashes enormous potential and he's quick, strong, determined and athletic enough to develop into a valuable NFL starter if he continues to refine his technique and improve his instincts." - Scouts, Inc.
"Injured much of career. Is athletic, has good feet, quickness and adequate range. Felt he hustled and showed the ability to make plays outside the tackle box. Will get tall in-line and needs to shed blocks more consistently. Lacks A-1 closing speed. Is not there yet, but you are going to have to take this player far earlier than his skill and production level would indicate. No sacks as a college player. Problems locating ball on misdirections (see Wake Forest)." - Tom Marino, Scout.com
"Guion is an athletic prospect on the defensive line with possibilities as a conventional defensive tackle or a two-gap lineman. He needs to improve his strength, add bulk, and complete his game, yet he's a solid developmental prospect who should get consideration in the late rounds." - SI.com
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