New Orleans Saints Rookie Michael Thomas Impressing the League, but Not Uncle Keyshawn Johnson
New Orleans Saints rookie wide receiver Michael Thomas has been impressing everyone around the league since the team drafted him out of Ohio State. Quarterback Drew Brees and head coach Sean Payton have done some magical things in the past with wide receivers such as Marques Colston and Lance Moore, who were practically unheard of before Brees and Payton worked miracles with them, and Thomas has received the same treatment.
Through eight games, Thomas has put up 573 yards to go along with five touchdowns. Of his 47 receptions, 30 of them have been first downs. Last week against the San Francisco 49ers, Thomas had one of the best games of his short career with 73 yards and two touchdowns. One of those TDs was a beautiful catch in double coverage in the back corner of the end zone. Everyone’s jaws dropped—except for the jaw of Thomas’s uncle and former NFL star Keyshawn Johnson.
“Um, ‘Good concentration,’” said Johnson of his reaction to the catch. “Just, ‘Oh, okay, he made the catch.’”
While many of us see Thomas as a star in the making, Keyshawn doesn’t believe Thomas has even exceeded expectations yet. Maybe it’s because Johnson knows what his nephew can bring to the table, and he understands that Ohio State didn’t always offer Thomas a chance to show off his incredible talents.
“No, he hasn’t really,” said Johnson. “I mean, I expected for him to play solid. Knowing the offense, knowing what Sean [Payton] and the system and Drew Brees had to offer, and knowing he’s coming from a college system that didn’t allow him to showcase his skill set sometimes because of the system they elect to run. I’m glad he’s with the right person in Sean Payton who knows what to do with him.”
If Thomas still has a lot more to give, then I’m beyond excited to see what the next few years have in store for the rookie. I mean, Good Lord, he’s playing at a pretty high level right now, the only way to improve at this point is to break into the ranks of Odell Beckham Jr and Antonio Brown.