A few games into the season, defensive tackle Letroy Guion was part of the problem.
The Green Bay Packers defense was a sieve and part of the reason for that was the middle of their defensive line, where Guion had taken over for the injured B.J. Raji. Guion, who the Packers signed after Minnesota released him in the offseason, looked lost and like a bust — if you can call a guy released by the Vikings a bust.
His absence in training camp likely played a part in that. Guion showed up with a hamstring injury and didn’t practice for the first time until the week before the season opener.
As terrible as Guion looked early in the season, much of that can likely be attributed to rust and unfamiliarity with the Packers’ system.
Things started to change when the Packers played Minnesota in week 5. Guion showed up with four tackles and 1.5 sacks.
From there on out he’s been solid. Guion finished the season with career highs in tackles (32) and sacks (3.5). Those numbers are also well above Raji’s 2013 production (17 tackles, no sacks).
Guion signed a one-year, $1 million deal in the offseason and the Packers have decided they’d like to keep him around beyond this season.
“We’ve had some very, very early conversations,” Guion’s agent Seth Katz said. “The Packers are obviously focused on the postseason, but we know how they feel about him, and they know he wants to be back. We’re not making it a secret that he wants to stay in Green Bay.”
All well and good as far as we’re concerned. Guion is just 27 and he’s certainly been an improvement over Raji and Ryan Pickett, who played nose tackle for the Packers in recent seasons.
As an aside, if the Packers end up investing in Guion, that probably signals the end of the line for Raji in Green Bay. He too had signed a one-year contract prior to the season after finding little to no interest on the free agent market.
With Guion in the fold, the Packers seemingly have little to no use for the underachieving Raji.