We are at that time of year again where the NFL Network does their top 100 players for the coming season as voted on by the players. As with any list of this sort, it is subject to a great deal of debate. That debate is often fueled by fans that are obviously partial to the players that play on their favorite teams. With that said, a Denver Broncos player is entirely too low on the list.
Demaryius Thomas was reveled on Thursday night as the 68th best player in the NFL, and it’s not so much that he’s too low; it’s more about where he is ranked in relation to other receivers around the league.
There are reportedly 13 receivers who are ahead of Thomas on the list, and that by itself is a joke. I understand that Thomas has only had one big season, but his physical abilities are almost unmatched. The only other receiver who compares to Thomas in terms of size and speed is Calvin Johnson of the Detroit Lions.
Calm down, I’m not saying Thomas is as good as Johnson. I’m only pointing out that he has the same tools as the guy who had just under 2,000 yards in receiving last year. While Thomas is not yet in a class with Johnson, there’s no way that there are 13 receivers better than he is right now.
Thomas is too big for most cornerbacks and can also run by most of them, and he is still learning how to play the position. When he came out of college, Thomas was not a good route runner. It wasn’t his fault; he played in an option system and was only asked to run two routes, the go route and the comeback.
Since Peyton Manning arrived in Denver, Thomas has worked hard to improve his route running and had his best season last year. Assuming he continues to progress as he did in 2012, there is no ceiling for Thomas. I’m not overstating it when I tell you that Thomas could be among the two or three best receivers in the NFL by the end of 2013.
The Broncos have a lot of weapons in the passing game and that means Thomas is going to see more single coverage this season, and he will feast on that.
The fact that Dwayne Bowe of the Kansas City Chiefs is ranked three spots in front of Thomas at #65 should tell you that Thomas is too low. Bowe is talented but has underachieved and is inconsistent. If you could have Thomas or Bowe on your team, who would you take?
I would take Thomas everyday of the week right now and a year from now; he may find himself in the top 10 on that list. He’s that good!
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