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Detroit Lions schedule official visit with Wesley OG Matthew Gono

The Lions have scheduled a visit with one of the most athletic small school offensive linemen in the draft.

NFL: Combine Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions have another official visit scheduled according to Tony Pauline, who reports the team has a visit set up with Wesley OT/OG Matthew Gono. The Chicago Bears have also scheduled an official visit according to Pauline, and Gono is one of the top small-school prospects hoping to hear his name called during the draft. The Ravens may also be suitors, as it was their offensive line coach who ran drills at the pro day, but there were a total of 20 teams that came out to see if the former left tackle could make it onto a pro roster.

Gono, who started one year at left tackle and three on the right side, measured 6042 and 316 pounds, completed 26 reps on the bench press, touched 9-foot-10 in the broad jump and timed 5.10 in the 40. Those numbers are significantly better than the ones posted at the combine by Jamil Demby of Maine. - Tony Pauline

While Pauline dutifully notes the measurements that Gono put forth in his normal, stoic manner, let me provide a little bit of context. A 9-foot-10 broad jump would have been the third best ever for a guard in the past three decades at the NFL Combine and eighth best for any offensive lineman over that span. The two guards who did better did so by a single inch, and each weighed more than 15 pounds less than Gono does. It’s an incredible number to see both from someone that size and from someone expected to play on the interior in the NFL. Pro day numbers are unofficial as of yet, but Matthew Gono would be sitting at a 9.76 Relative Athletic Score at the moment out of a possible 10.

While he played left tackle last season and right tackle the three years prior to that, Gono projects to play guard in the NFL and that is the position he has been working at. He played guard at the NFLPA Bowl where he was mentioned as the best offensive player on the field. A 50-game starter at tackle, he has shown the durability and versatility that teams prize and after his pro day he added some elite athletic traits into the mix.

After not allowing a sack in 2017, it’s likely teams will go back to his tape and see a player that is worth investing a draft pick in. Expected to play a swing guard role in the pros, and thus likely a priority free agent after the draft concludes, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear Matthew Gono’s name called in the last few rounds of the draft. With this many teams vying for his attention, somebody is going to get greedy and lock him down before the draft concludes. Could that team be the Detroit Lions? As a versatile, athletic, and durable starter who is known for being a strong pass blocker, I would put him very firmly on the back ends of any mock for the Lions between now and April.

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