However, is an upright runner who exposes too much of his body when running inside. Allows defenders to easily get into his frame and needs to do a better job running behind his pads. Isn’t the most sudden or coordinated of backs and routinely gets too long/overextended with his footwork, failing to consistently keep his feet under him and maintain proper balance. Has the ability to cut against the grain, stick his foot in the ground at full speed and side step a defender in space. However, he isn’t shifty enough to make a man miss in tight quarters and create for himself behind the line. Doesn’t exhibit a great first step when asked to press the hole and seems to only have one gear to his game. Struggles to get back up to speed quickly out of his breaks and isn’t going to outpace anyone to the edge at the second level.
Impression: A big, physical back who runs hard and exhibits the ability to pick his way through traffic. However, isn’t a real impressive athlete, runs upright and will have a tough time averaging over 4.0 yards per carry at the next level. Looks more like a physical backup type runner to me who isn’t dynamic enough to start in the NFL."
Negatives: Runs too upright, will be prone to injury... Would like to see him wrap the ball up better when fighting through trash, too often he leaves the ball visible to defenders... Taller running backs seem to wear down quickly in the NFL... Will be a 24 year old rookie... Lacks explosion, is more of a slow twitch runner, may struggle shaking tacklers at the next level... His upright running style gets him knocked off balance too easily and it allows him to be pushed backwards far too often... Running style and frame are comparable to former Colorado Buffalo Chris Brown who had a very short NFL career."
Kansas State fans and NFL scouts wanted to see if Thomas could continue that success during his senior campaign. Through six games, the answer is an overwhelming yes. Thomas has increased his yards per carry average from 5.1 as a junior to 5.4 as a senior and has made seven trips to the end zone. Thomas has proven that he can carry the load and at 228 pounds, he has the size to be a bruising back in the NFL.
Thomas, who played quarterback in high school and a little bit in junior college, is a smart and tough player who has had to carry the Kansas State offense and done a very good job of it. When all is said and done, Thomas should be a second or third round selection and one of the safer running backs in this class. He may not be quite as explosive as some others, but he is an every down back."
Thomas is the only legitimate offensive weapon the Wildcats have, and most defenses know where the ball is going, yet he still has been able to crease them. Some evaluators have been so enamored with him that they have stamped late first-round grades on Thomas, but his lack of foot speed likely will push him down a round or two."
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