No matter the scheme, Gary Guyton ready for big season with Patriots
|08.09.11 at 1:20 am ET|
FOXBORO – Gary Guyton has about as much experience as anybody on defense for the Patriots, and his knowledge and versatility could serve him well as the regular season draws closer.
Guyton, who is entering his fourth season in New England, has experience in both the 3-4 and 4-3 defensive schemes, and with rumblings of a potential shift in the Pats’ defensive strategy, that puts him a step ahead of the competition. Yet for Guyton, it doesn’t matter what scheme he plays in.
“I’m just coming out here to work, to be honest,” Guyton said. “I’m just coming out here to work, to be the best I can, be the best pro I can be.”
Guyton recorded 43 tackles (23 solo) and had six pass deflections and two interceptions in 16 games last season, eight of which he started. In addition, he returned an interception 59 yards for a touchdown in Week 1 against Cincinnati and returned a fumble 35 yards for the score in Week 14 against Chicago.
Entering his fourth training camp with the Pats, Guyton is committed to improving his game.
“I’m just coming in here and working,” said Guyton. “Trying to do the best I can every day and working on trying to get better every day.”
Guyton signed with New England as an undrafted free agent in 2008. That was the same year that Bill Belichick drafted linebacker Jerod Mayo, who Guyton has developed a strong bond with.
“It’s good having a guy like Jerod around,” said Guyton. “We came in together, he’s a good friend.”
Mayo and Guyton have blossomed together, although Mayo’s early success has him on the path to NFL stardom. Still, Guyton has progressed and knows that he has been improving.
In his rookie season, Guyton played in 15 games and had 19 tackles (10 solo) and even had the opportunity to start twice after Tedy Bruschi was injured. The next season, Guyton posted a career high in tackles with 55 (25 solo) and had four pass deflections in 16 games, all of which he started.
“Definitely getting better,” he said. “Every day get out here, try to do the best I can. Just keep on working on myself and at my job.”
Guyton, a Georgia native and Georgia Tech graduate, worked out down south during the offseason, and is focused on making his presence felt at Patriots training camp.
“Now I’m with the Patriots, and it’s all working out,” Guyton said. “I’ve come ready to do the best I can in camp.”
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