Thomas, who is 6'4" and 330 pounds, said he enjoys taking on two blockers when he's playing nose. "I love guerilla warfare, baby," he said. "That's where you earn your stripes. I got my stripes. I can anchor that thing. Not everyone can play that position."
Thomas said he benefits from the fact that Tar Heels coach Butch Davis and defensive line coach John Blake have extensive NFL coaching backgrounds. "Our defense is pro-style, we're attacking, we're gap-scheming and stuff like that," Thomas said. "Most of the stuff I'm already used to right now."
Thomas is a big, strong interior lineman who shows surprising athleticism. While he is on the tall side for a DT/NT prospect, he does have a lot of power in his lower body and can collapse the pocket.
He has a lot of experience and shows good read-and-react skills, is surprisingly athletic for a big man, and shows good backside pursuit. He is a relentless player who keeps after the play until the whistle blows. He's also a durable player who played through an ankle sprain as a redshirt sophomore.
Thomas has added value because of his versatility: he's best suited as a 4-3 tackle.
The Raiders draft the DT that is moving up everyone’s board. He is big, athletic, and a fantastic run stuffer. He had a solid Combine and will be just what the Raiders ordered.
Other Possible Picks:
Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama (6’4”, 354)
Lamarr Houston, DT, Texas (6’3”, 305)