The New Orleans Saints receiver is fueled by doubters. He has plagued through a rigorous passion built up through a lifetime to be a late bloomer at senior school, struggling to have on the field at Ohio State and falling into the next round of this 2016 draft.
His team mates and coaches marvel in an almost maniacal drive that never lets up. Quarterback Drew Brees talks concerning the way Thomas treats every rep at practice such as a”superbowl rep.” Coach Sean Payton recently told NFL.com that he felt just like he got hit by a car if he left the mistake of standing as the defensive back across from Thomas throughout a yearlong session.
But if he keeps alive around his nickname,”can’t Guard Mike” is about to run out from doubters so on.
Thomas has been called a first team all pro in his third NFL season after putting franchise records together with 125 grabs and 1,405 yards to proceed with nine touchdown grabs.
“The playoff point is just all about winning,” Thomas stated this week, even rejecting the problem in what it means for him . “Whatever it takes to win, be the final team standing, play for a tournament and finally win a championship is what exactly the play offs mean if you ask me personally.
“[This opportunity] is really a boon. That is what training camp, OTAs, all the encounters, all of the excess work after [clinic ], the off-season repetitions — it is a testament to the position we’re in today. And we only want to help keep it going.”
Thomas, but has never made any secret about his lofty aspirations to be contemplated “there with all the best of these” when everything is said and done in his career. And we’ve experienced glimpses of the way he flourishes on the largest stages.
You may possibly remember Thomas grabbing the game-clinching, 72-yard touch down in the Saints’ most high-profile show down of this season against the Los Angeles Rams — afterward yanking a cellphone from under the target post because he’d prepared ahead of time for having such a large moment in the spotlight.
Last season’s playoffs were no different.
Thomas caught eight passes for 131 yards at the Saints’ wild card victory against Carolina.
However, Thomas has emerged significantly a lot more than any of these as some body Brees will target in those gotta-have-it moments, even if he is being swarmed by No. 1 cornerbacks and double-teams — simply as a result of the absence of proven thickness the Saints have in the others of these receiving corps.
“Listen, you make good, wise decisions, smart decisions. [However, ] if he is one-of-a-kind, I like our odds. When he is 2-on-1, it better be a really good 2-on-1 or there’s usually still a location you’ll be able to throw the ball at which they could possibly get it and so they can not,” said Brees, that predicted Thomas’ astonishing total of 125 grabs”pretty wonderful.”
“That says alot about him, because obviously he gets a good deal of attention. It isn’t like they just put him onto an island every match. He’s getting a lot of double coverage. He has got a lot of safeties leaning his manner and different matters. So, he’s gotta work hard to get open and he can. He does a excellent job of the.
“He’s highly competitive. He hopes to be the guy to get the ball and make the big play, therefore that’s excellent. It also opens opportunities for other guys”
Payton quickly rejected the thought the Saints would ever target Thomas no matter how heavily he has been insured:”No, no, no, no, no, no. No.
However, Payton said,”Our job during this week is always to attempt to figure out the way to take the doubleteam away from him or just how to slow that down”
Although he is still a new player in the NFL, ” the 25-year-old Thomas said he takes his responsibility as Brees’ go-to target.
“Being there, being his guy, with the maximum experience with him, I must act like that I have the most experience with him,” Thomas explained. “I can not leave out him.”
And he can not help but port sometimes after games when he believes the officials let defensive backs eliminate too much catching against him (the Saints’ 13-10 loss at Dallas at Week 1-3 included in this ).
However he also knows that’s a real possibility he has to live with since conflicting defenses certainly do not exceed him.
“I had to fight — I definitely had to fight for it,” had been Thomas’ first answer when asked about the numbers he put up in 2013. “But that’s only the numbers that I turned in at the end of this year.
“I am fundamentally trying to reverse in better numbers a year ago and try to take another thing up my match. I am not wanting to pat myself on the rear or state,’Great position.’ I am only trying to ultimately be the final team standing and also help my team win a championship”