NFL Draft Profile: DE Chad Thomas

NFL Draft Profile: DE Chad Thomas

Chad Thomas is a Miami guy. He grew up in Liberty City and went to Booker T. Washington High School. Signed with the Hurricanes. Plays with an edge and carries himself with respectable swagger. He will put his body on the line for his teammates. He is the definition of a true Miami guy. On the football side of things, Thomas was the last 5 Star player Miami signed before Lorenzo Lingard. It is hard to argue Thomas did not live up to that ranking. When it was all said and done, Thomas had 33 career starts. He also had wins against Notre Dame and Florida State in his final season as a Hurricane. While his final three starts did not go the way anyone wanted them to go, Thomas wrapped up his Miami career with a memorable senior campaign.

Pre-Draft Measurables:
Height: 6’5’’

Weight: 281 pounds

Arms: 33 1/2’’

Hands: 10 1/4”

Aside from his musical talent, Chad Thomas’ biggest strengths include: his size, his mobility, and his versatility. Chad Thomas already has ideal size for an NFL defensive end. Thomas has better size than some of the best defensive ends in the NFL such as: Cameron Wake, Michael Bennett, and Cameron Jordan. This great size would mean nothing without his mobility. While Thomas did run a 4.92 in the 40 at the combine, it is his lateral quickness that is more impressive. He has the feet to be able to stay in front of shifty running backs and quarterbacks. He also has the speed to chase down the ball carrier from the backside, which may be the most underrated part of his game. Anytime you run to the opposite side of Thomas, you will still need a lineman to account for him or else he will eat you up from the backside. When you have to put together a football team on just a 53 man roster, having players that can play multiple positions is very appealing. While Thomas is a defensive end, we have seen him move inside on countless occasions. Whenever you get the opposing offense into an obvious passing situation, Thomas will be able to move inside and allow you to put more pass rushers on the field. You could even argue that Thomas is a better pass rusher from the defensive tackle position.

The production has not been there. He relies too much on pure athleticism, and focuses a lot on his music. The music does not concern me, but has been brought up many times so I will address the situation. Chad Thomas played in 40 games for the Hurricanes, starting in 33 of those. In those 40 games, Thomas only had 103 tackles, 26 of those coming for a loss. He also only had 10 career sacks. Some of the lack of production is due to Miami having pass rush specialist being brought in on third down, resulting in Thomas not getting as many chances to rush the passer. Either way NFL teams want to see more production from a guy who started 33 games. At Miami, Thomas has been able to use just his athleticism and still be a quality player. However, Thomas will need to improve his technique if he is going to be a quality NFL player. NFL offensive tackles are very athletic and will not be beat by a defensive end who plays sloppy. You can have a different opinion, but there has been a lot to be said about how dedicated Thomas is to the game of football. NFL scouts have said Thomas may be too focused on his music. The worry is that Thomas will not put his entire heart and soul into the game of football. While I do not think that this is valid, NFL scouts have voiced these concerns.

Prediction-3rd round:
According to Lance Zierlein, an AFC team East Coast scout, "He will be a very good NFL player or a bust. I don't think there will be an in-between. He has his music thing which he's supposedly really good at. I think it's legitimate to question whether or not his heart will be into football as a long-term passion. He's really talented but hasn't improved like he should have." When you hear a scout say “boom or bust”, you do not expect this player to be drafted very high. With that being said, there will come a time this weekend when Thomas’ size and athleticism will be too good to pass up. I expect this to happen on Friday.

Comments (8)

I don't get his music being a weakness. I can understand teams being concerned that music may become a higher priority. However, I think it's silly to penalize someone because they are multi talented.

Just because he's good at music doesn't mean he cares less about football.

If an NFL player likes to paint (there are several that do), are people worried that the player will quit football because his paintings are selling and being displayed at major art museums? **** no.

I don't see where Chad has ever given anyone the opportunity to question his desire. The kid is talented with football and his music. Let's just let everything play itself out and not pass prejudgment on him.
Mike Ried DT Penn State sterling multi year career In the NFL. He was also a talented musician and spent his after football life as a successful composer, arranger. Teams ought to take notice.
Chad Thomas's 5 star ranking was the biggest waste of the Dorito 3-4/2 gap era. His lack of production is a direct result of years wasted by incompetent staff trying to square peg/round hole him into a system not fitting his abilities.
He would have had more production had Richt been his coach for those 40 games.

I do agree though his strength was not getting sacks. He was an excelllent run support DE though.