2016-2017 Season Important For Demaryius Thomas
An elite wide receiver has its perks, but it comes with plenty of criticism.
Demaryius Thomas is an elite receiver in the NFL, but the 2016-2017 season is as important as his previous years. Despite racking up a quiet 1,300 yards, Thomas encountered his fair share of drops his last couple seasons leading to criticism from fans and the media.
No Peyton Manning could present an early issue for Thomas since both had a relationship on and off the field. However Thomas understands this is a critical season this year for him in establishing rapport with the three quarterbacks.
“It’s a little different. I think it’s the best thing to do. We go to each one of them and see who that guy will be. It’s a little more exciting because all of them can make every throw. It’s just a little different just going with somebody new. I’ve been with [QB] Peyton [Manning] for the last four years. Of course, I had [Texans QB] Brock [Osweiler] as well. It’s like my first time throwing with any of them,” Thomas on his connection with Mark Sanchez, Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch.
The numerous drops from Thomas are his biggest issue to fix, which in turn translate to him shrinking in big games. Emmanuel Sanders has been phenomenal in his first few years in Denver. It is disappointing to see Thomas disappear in games and it is not far off to think Sanders is better than Thomas right now. That is not to say if the Broncos ran the offense Lynch’s coaches had designed in college, Thomas’ production and drops might not be an issues. If Thomas and Sanchez/Siemian have an understanding of one another, they too can produce during preseason and in the season.
“Coming off of last year, of course I’ve got to do better with the drops. People say it was one of my down seasons. Of course doing better with the drops. Don’t take any plays off when it’s a run on the backside and the running back cuts back and my guy makes the tackle. It’s some of those small things,” Thomas on what motivates him.
Thomas needs to assert himself more as a physical receiver. He brings great size, but he must utilize it better to expose the weaknesses of the cornerbacks in the league. Johnson revolutionized the wide receiver position with his size, quickness and strength. Thomas has the ability to elevate his game to the same level as the other elite level wide receivers in the NFL. Thomas has the right attitude; he has the tools; he now has the chance to transform his game, and that of the Broncos, to reclaim fully elite status and I believe he can do it.