The Jets are weak in the secondary, specifically with the loss of safeties LaRon Landry and Yeremiah Bell, coincidentally their two starters from last year. They are looking for Antonio Allen, who was a rookie last year, to step up, but they still need to bring in other safety to compete for the starting job.
Syracuse strong safety Shamarko Thomas made the shocking decision to return for the 2012 collegiate season. Teammates Chandler Jones and free safety Phillip Thomas, who also were debating entering the 2012 NFL Draft, followed with their contemplations and entered the league a year earlier than Thomas.
Thomas started all 13 games at safety for Syracuse in 2012, finishing as the Orange’s top tackler. Thomas recorded 88 tackles across that 13 game span. He is an extremely aggressive defender who uses his leverage advantage in order to slip through holes in the blocking front to pursue the ball carrier. Thomas is a reckless defender and always seeks those big hits. His 4.26 40 time during Syracuse’s junior timing day is astounding and leads you to believe that he can keep up with any receiver in the league.
Thomas has some size limitations which are a huge concern to scouts. His aggressiveness is one of his strengths and weaknesses, and he needs to control how often he bites on fakes. He sometimes leads in with his shoulder, which isn’t always the best option, as it can lead to some slipped tackles.
Thomas draws comparisons to Bob Sanders from the Indianapolis Colts, and if he is anything like Sanders was in his hey-day, the Jets will be fortunate to pick him up.