- Name: Jake Guidone
- Position: OL (C,G)
- College: University of Connecticut / Dartmouth College
- Height: 6’3”
- Weight: 305
- Twitter: @guidone_jake
- Instagram: @guidone_jake
What makes you a top prospect at your position in the 2023 NFL Draft?
- My versatility makes me a top prospect for the draft. I have game experience at center, guard, and tight end throughout my collegiate career, and have gained significant confidence in my abilities. I am more than willing to fulfill any positional needs of a team.
At what age were you first interested in the sport of football?
- I remember signing up to play youth football in third grade, and I immediately fell in love with the sport. It became apparent early in my life that this was something I was going to stick with, and I haven’t turned back.
What is one thing that NFL teams should know about you?
- I am capable of adapting to any system, and feel my football IQ has grown tremendously over the years. I will compete and give maniacal effort, while also looking to improve my game and expand my arsenal.
If you could donate to one cause in the world, what would it be?
- I would donate to mental health research. This is a problem that has been around for decades, and is just now starting to receive the proper attention. I have had several friends and teammates in the past who have struggled with mental health, and it’s never a good experience.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
- “Live in the moment”. So often we look to the future, and rarely enjoy the little things that happen in everyday life. This advice has been crucial, allowing me to slow things down and appreciate the moment more often, especially during games.
Who was your childhood hero?
- My childhood hero was Rob Gronkowski. I grew up watching him on t.v., and always wanted to play tight end. He may have been the inspiration behind my spike celebration as well.
Who is the most underrated teammate in your locker room at your school?
- Our most underrated player is Nigel Fitzgerald. He’s been out recently, and hasn’t been able to show the world what he is capable of. Nigel’s been putting in the work, and will be a key player for us throughout the rest of the season. People are going to know #2.
What is your biggest pet peeve?
- My biggest pet peeve is not doing the little things right (whether that be in everyday life, or on the field). Concentrating on the details is a mindset that wins football games. Average players do what they are supposed to do, but great players do what is required to win.
Overcoming adversity is what defines character, what was the hardest moment in your life to overcome?
- When leaving high school, I had a lot of self doubt regarding my abilities and skills. Being undersized, I was not heavily recruited, and it made me question if I was chasing an impossible dream. Playing football was (and still is) all I ever wanted to do, and I wasn’t ready to walk away. Thankfully I was given an opportunity to play division one football, and now I have been given another opportunity to play FBS football at UConn.
Tell me something about your school and why it is so special to you?
- UConn made an immediate impression on me when I took my official visit. The facilities, campus and stadium blew me away. Even more impressive was the culture and atmosphere that Coach Mora was creating, and has created at UConn. It has given this team the opportunity to grow not just as players, but as a collective unit.
What is your favorite snack food?
- My favorite snack food is Welch’s fruit snacks. I’ve had them growing up and have never stopped enjoying them. Sometimes I’ll even throw a few packs in the freezer (trust me on this one). They are undefeated.
What is the best part of football?
- The best part of football is being able to impose your will on your opponent. If you can make them quit mentally, things only get easier after that. It is one of the greatest feelings as an offensive lineman.
If you could sell yourself in one sentence what would you say?
- I am a true competitor and versatile athlete looking for the opportunity to help a team win.
If you could compare your play to one player in the NFL who would it be?
- I would compare myself to Alex Mack. He is excellent at playing with a base, and anchoring down against heavier interior rushers. Mack also plays with fast hands, making it difficult for the defender to work a move.
If you could have dinner with three people dead or alive, who would it be and why?
- The first person I would have dinner with is my grandfather. He passed away a few years back, and I would ask him more about our family and my heritage. I’d also invite Tom Brady, another childhood hero of mine. I’d ask him about the qualities he sees in leaders, as well as what it takes to be a winner at the pro level. The last person would be Adam Sandler, cause why not have a good laugh while we are eating?