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    Monday, December 24, 2007

    Examining The Impact Of Missing Players: Defensive Front Four

    FSU's defense took a major hit and will look a lot different for the bowl game. On the defensive line, FSU will not have the services of defensive tackle Letroy Guion or defensive tackle Budd Thacker. Each of them started eight games this season.

    Nose tackle Paul Griffin and defensive ends Neefy Moffett and Justin Mincy are also staying at home. The defensive front four will be very thin for the bowl game with several walk-ons listed on the depth chart. These missing players had a combined 102 tackles and 5 sacks for the season. Guion with 31 tackles and 1 sack is a huge loss for the defensive line along with Thacker with 23 tackles and Griffin with 24 tackles.

    Everett Brown with 35 tackles and 6 sacks will start at left end for the Noles and will be backed up by walk-on Benjamin Lankin. Injury-plagued Emmanuel Dunbar with only 1 tackle has played in two games and will vie with Kendrick Stewart for the starting nose guard. Defensive tackle Andre Fluellen has 16 tackles and 1 sack. Right end Alex Boston has 20 tackles and 2 1/2 sacks on the year and will be backed up by walk-ons.

    It goes without saying that the Nole offense will be critical in helping to keep the defense off the field due to the reduced numbers. However, FSU has not been able to sustain drives all year long and ranks 9th in the ACC in third down conversions.

    Unofficial Defensive Front Four Depth Chart:

    LE: Everett Brown, walk-on Benjamin Lamkin
    NG: Emanuel Dunbar, Kendrick Stewart
    DT: Andre Fluellen
    RE: Alex Boston, walk-on Lamkin/Garrison Sanborn

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