The final player drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in 2012. . .and the first to sign his rookie contract, as we told you just a little bit ago. . .is defensive lineman Trevor Guyton out of the University of California.
Guyton played all along the defensive line for the Golden Bears, seeing time at both defensive end spots as well as spending time inside at defensive tackle. He has the necessary size to be able to see time at both positions in the NFL as well, measuring in at around 6'3" and 285 pounds.
Guyton didn't play much early in his career at Cal. As a freshman, he played in the final three games of the season, and recorded three tackles. During his sophomore year, he was the primary backup to Tyson Alualu (who was a top 10 pick in the 2010 NFL Draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars) at left defensive end. He participated in 11 games, collecting 13 tackles, one strip-sack, and four tackles for loss.
He really started coming around as a junior in 2010, where he again played in 11 games and started the last four. He wound up amassing 29 tackles on the year, 20 of which came in the four games that he started. He also had 4.5 sacks and 8.5 tackles for loss. For his efforts, he was the recipient of the Bob Tessier award, which the Golden Bears give to their most improved defensive lineman.
Guyton truly shined as a senior, starting in all 13 games for the Golden Bears and leading the team with 5.5 sacks. He also had 12 tackles for loss, good for sixth in the Pac-12, forcing two fumbles and recovering two others. He was named to the All-Pac 12 second team for the season.
Trevor Guyton might have been the biggest steal that the Minnesota Vikings picked up in the 2012 NFL Draft. Both Mike Mayock of the NFL Network and ESPN's scouting services had him listed among the top 100 players available going into draft weekend, so for the Vikings to get him in the seventh round (number 219 overall) appears to be a truly impressive heist. I mentioned his versatility earlier, and it will be interesting to see where, primarily, the Vikings have him lined up on the defensive line. I think that Trevor Guyton has the chance to make a real impact on this team pretty early on, as the depth on the defensive line is a bit of a question mark.