Rookie Patriot linebacker and former Hinesville resident Gary Guyton was ranked 126th among linebackers in statistics posted on the NFL Web site. He tied Jon Alston from the Oakland Raiders, Anthony Spencer of Dallas and Patriot teammate Adalius Thomas.
Guyton finished the 2008 season with 34 tackles, 25 being solos and 9 assists. He played in 15 games and had two starts in his rookie year.
Guyton played in his first NFL game on Sept. 7 when the Patriots defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 17-10, coming in as a reserve linebacker and seeing action on special teams and the punt return unit. He made his first NFL tackle in the Patriots 19-10 win over the New York Jets on Sept. 14. He had a solo tackle in coverage and tied for the team lead with two special team tackles in the game against the Miami Dolphins.
Against San Francisco, he made two solo tackles and one on special teams.
In the Patriots’ 41-7 victory over the Broncos, Guyton recovered his first NFL fumble. He tallied a season high five tackles (four of them solo) against the Colts and dropped Joseph Addai for a loss in the fourth quarter.
In the Jets rematch on Nov. 13, Guyton tallied one tackle, two passes defended and his team-leading second fumble recovery against the Jets by scooping up a Jerricho Cotchery fumble, forced by Jason Webster, in the fourth quarter that set up a game-tying Stephen Gostkowski field goal. He was credited with his first two passes defended, one coming on a Brett Favre pass intended for Leon Washington on second and 15 in overtime.
Guyton made his first career start at outside linebacker in the Patriots’ 24-21 comeback win over the Seahawks on Dec. 7. Guyton disrupted a Seneca Wallace pass intended for Maurice Morris in the third quarter and registered two solo tackles and one special teams tackle. At Oakland he started at inside linebacker in the Patriots’ 49-26 victory over the Raiders on Dec. 14.