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Big Shout Out To Thomas

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by All_Around_Brown, Sep 20, 2006.

  1. All_Around_Brown

    All_Around_Brown Rookie

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    After reviewing the game for the second time, I noticed Thomas' blocking opened big holes. I was impressed with this kid. He sticks like glue and appears hard to shed. Maroneys TD and a few long runs were sprung here. Particularly in the first drive where Thomas went in motion and blew up an LB. Hope he keeps it up.

    Havent seen this topic posted yet, so wanted to bring it to the table.

    The Wendy guy shows alot of promise in the running and passing game IMO.
  2. Brownfan80

    Brownfan80 Rookie

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    I noticed that too on the replays that I saw on Patriots.com (the NFL network recap?). He's doing a pretty good job of coming in and being a cog already. :)
  3. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    That's interesting - and good - because although his listed height/weight isn't too much different than Graham and Watson were as rookies, he does look thin out there. He might well be our #2 TE next year so we need him to be a solid blocker - we know he can catch.
  4. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I haven't started breaking down tape, but I noticed him during the game and saw him again on NFL Replay. I believe Maroney's TD was where he actually whiffed on his kickout block of Kerry Rhodes (Evans cleaned up for him), but on Corey's TD, Dave blocked two guys at the same time until Evans came along and helped out. His blocking has been a very pleasant surprise, it will be interesting to see how he progresses after Woicik and Nash tune him up in the off-season.
  5. Gon_Trevil

    Gon_Trevil Rookie

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    Where do you review the game?
  6. All_Around_Brown

    All_Around_Brown Rookie

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    I caught both repeats on the NFL network. Regarding the Koolaid TD, it looked to me like he and Evans doubled the edge, sealing it for Maroneys clean run inside. He may have whiffed, and seems undersized but overall, he seems fiesty to me.
  7. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress Rookie

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    The more Thomas is on the field the better this team will be (As with CJ). IMO he's already the 2nd best TE on the team.
  8. borg

    borg Rookie

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    The kid sure has a smoooooth running style
  9. desi-patsfan

    desi-patsfan Rookie

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    I dont see how hes the 2nd best. Ben is the best receiveing tight end we have Dan is a killer blocker. David seems like he will be able to do both he is still clearly number 3.
  10. zippo59

    zippo59 Rookie

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    This is cool because the reviews out of college were that he is a primarily pass catching tight end who wasn't terrible at blocking but wasn't great either. It seems he has been making progress.

    Thomas is the kind of guy who isn't the biggest, or the strongest, or the fastest but just knows how to get open. He is very smart, and from what he said after we drafted him he's great to coach. It doesn't hurt that he has fabulous hands. This is a definitely a Patriots guy. I remember watching the Rose Bowl and seeing this Texas tight end getting open constantly and catching everything that was thrown to him, and thinking "he is going to be a great NFL TE. I'd love him to be on the Pats but with our TE situation he will probably be gone before we take a TE, if we do at all." It wasn't until a little while after the draft that I found out Dave Thomas was that guy, so I was thrilled.
  11. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress Rookie

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    Dan is not a killer blocker. He is an average blocker. Thomas has better hands than Watson, although he is obviously less athletic. But the TE is often just a safety net for the QB in the passing game, and good hands, savvy and consistency are more important at the position than anything else. Blocking is alot about technique, effort and desire and Thomas will learn what he lacks and has plenty of the rest.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2006
  12. zippo59

    zippo59 Rookie

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    I'm not trying to be a wise-a$s, this is a sincere question. What have you seen that has caused you to form this opinion. Can you give specific examples? Have you been closing analyzing game film?
  13. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I suspect that most are happy with one of our 2007 starting TE's.
  14. Alk

    Alk Rookie

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    You're kind of selling Watson short aren't you? :D I think Graham is clearly our best all around TE and alot of Patriots fans severely underrate him. You say he's an average blocker but the fact that whenever Light is struggling with an elite pass rusher and Graham slides over and the pass rush virtually disappears is no coincidence. His hands are well above average and he has just enough speed (although nothing like Watson's) that most LBs are going to have a hard time covering him. I think if we let Graham walk next season, it's going to be a HUGE loss.
  15. desi-patsfan

    desi-patsfan Rookie

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    Wow talk about underestimating someone. Why is it then that Dan is often asked to help the O-line out. He is MUCH more than an average blocker.
  16. All_Around_Brown

    All_Around_Brown Rookie

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    Lets not get all worked up in comparing him to either Watson or Graham, but instead compare him, more appropriately I think, to the man he replaced....Christian Fauria.

    I say this because of the level of athleticism and his physical frame BTW...not the color of his skin.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2006
  17. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress Rookie

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    One thing is for sure: Graham is the best TE blocker the Pats have. But the reason I think Graham's blocking is average compared to the league is because in 2005 he had 40 successful blocks out of 51 attempts, a percentage of 78.6%, which was 21st among all TEs. When Graham had the Pointof Attack or Key Block in a running play in 2005, the plays averaged 4.5 yards per attempt, which ranked 24th among Tight Ends. In comparison, Heath Miller, the rookie for the Steelers, had 91 successful blocks out of 110, a success rate of 82.7%, 10th in the league, and when he was the Point of Attack blocker or delivered a Key block, the RB averagd 6 yards per attempt. Kyle Brady: 83.5%, 5.4; Kris Mangum: 82.9%, 6.0; Tuman 82.5%, 5.1; etc.
    Several arguments could be made in Graham's defence: (1) he was nicked up last year; (2) the Pats running backs were sub-par; (3) The statistics I offer are inaccurate. To these I would answer (1) True, but he still wasn't a killer blocker. I have sympathy for his injury, but being nicked up is part of the game, and all players experience it. (2) Even if the Pats Rbs were sub-par, that doesn't explain why he finished 21st in successful blocks, which have little to do with the Rbs behind him. Willie Parker and Bettis weren't great either. And (3) I drew the stats from the much maligned KC Joyner. If you feel he is not credible than so be it. He put the time and effort in to accumulate the numbers, and I find that impressive. In the end, I believe Graham is a solid NFL blocker, but not the elite POA blocker that that we want to think he is. He showed good signs, flashes of blocking greatness in 2004, but hasn't been consistent since, probably due to his shoulder injury and maybe other reasons. Hopefully he proves the numbers wrong and emerges as a dominator. There's nothing I would like better than a monster POA blocker leading Maroney and Dillon.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2006
  18. TNPatsFan

    TNPatsFan Rookie

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    So according to KC Joyner, Jeremy Tuman is a better TE than Graham. That right there should tell you how credible his "statistics" are. I just don't believe everything is so cut and dried, like Joyner does. You can't pick some obscure statistic out of the air and declare player A a better player than player B because he has a better number.

    If anyone doesn't think Graham is an outstanding blocker, go back and watch the Super Bowl against Carolina and watch him dominate.
  19. Mosi Moose

    Mosi Moose Rookie

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    i'm not sure we have to "pick" one or the other--I love the 3 TE sets that we used last Sunday and think we'll see more of that this year. Splitting Ben out is a match-up nightmare. It also gives Dave the chance to run a route that can be used as a "check down" of sorts for Brady--much like that pass that he caught on Sunday. I love that play.
  20. Oswlek

    Oswlek Rookie

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    Pony, Graham had shoulder injuries that were severe enough for him to miss several games and to need surgery on both shoulders on the offseason. Those surgeries were complicated enough that given the entire offseason, Graham still was on the PUP for the first few weeks of camp. Just as most people aren't factoring in the injuries NE had as a team last year when evaluating the team, you are not factoring in the injuries of the player.

    Joyner's job is to tell us what happened, but it is our responsibility to apply that to the real world. Graham is easily the best blocking TE on the team and all I need is my eyes to tell me that. You might want to pop in a few of the 3GTG DVDs and look at how many times Graham just blew up his man on running plays.

    BTW, does anyone think that it was pure coincidence that NE ran the ball pretty well vs. Denver in the POs and that was Graham's first game back as a primary player?

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