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All of this equates to one thing: De’Anthony Thomas, Black Momba, DAT—whatever you want to call him—is the ultimate playmaker. He is a threat to hurt the defense from any place on the field. When he doesn't score, it almost feels like he sold the bleachers short.
Football is and always has been a physical game that is predicated on moving the chains to get into the end zone. Offenses can labor for 10-15 plays on some long drives before putting points on the board. This is precisely why having a player that can take it to the crib from any position, at any time is so valuable. This is what Thomas brings to a football team.
Of course, his defense may not always like the short rest they receive when Thomas touches the ball, but they will appreciate the six points.
Over his first season-and-a-fourth at Oregon, he has averaged over a first down a touch. He has 15 combined rushing and receiving touchdowns of over 25 yards in his career. In 2012, he is making a house call once every 3.5 times he touches the ball on offense.
It seems to be the easiest equation in college football—getting De’Anthony Thomas the football equals six points. Oregon just doesn't give him the pigskin enough. Borrowing the words of Keyshawn Johnson, just “give [him] the d**n ball.”
In light of Thomas’ skill set, his size is not as detrimental as one might think. He just needs the slightest bit of open grass to elude a defense and put six on the board.
Of course, it would benefit Thomas to put on some weight, which would alleviate some of the durability concerns. He also needs to solve his ball-handling issues. Despite these few red flags, he will be an impact player in the NFL and is worthy of being one of the first 32 selections when he decides to declare for the draft.