Julius Thomas to the Jacksonville Jaguars was hot news in March during the NFL’s free agency period. Now things have suddenly cooled.
It all started with the messy ending to the Denver Broncos/Julius Thomas marriage that seemed to be going so well before. 24 touchdowns in two years is a hefty amount of production for a tight end (even with Peyton Manning at quarterback) and it seemed that Denver was sorry to have him go, creating controversy over him “quitting” on the team. Regardless of whether Thomas is a “quitter” or not, the ultra-productive tight end is now with the Jags.
The move to land Thomas was initially lauded as bold by most everyone. It was seen by many as a necessary step in the development of young quarterback Blake Bortles and the overhaul of the decrepit roster that general manager Dave Caldwell is tasked with healing. The Jags likely overpaid for a receiving tight end who benefited from a high-powered offense, but in Julius Thomas they finally have a reliable tight end. All in all, it’s worth it.
Yet when I was looking around the news the other day I noticed a piece at Fox on the top-10 offseason pickups and noted to my chagrin that Julius Thomas to the Jaguars was not among them. Understanding the Jags being overlooked often and Thomas having some minor squabbles during his departure from Denver, that isn’t so bad. But when thinking about the big offseason moves for teams, there really are few more important than bringing a talent like Thomas to Jacksonville.
Thomas has the opportunity to be a true leader for a young team. He’s expected to bring reliability and scoring opportunities to an offense that has been outclassed by some high schools squads in recent years. Aside from Blake Bortles, he could have a bigger impact than most every other play maker. He’ll be put in a position to prove he is either something special or is not.
That’s worth watching and when you have someone who has been as prolific as Thomas in recent years, you don’t gloss over it.This season I hope Thomas can prove the doubters, nay-sayers, and those who treat his move to Jacksonville as an afterthought wrong. It’s high time the Jaguars had a top-10 free agent acquisition and frankly, Julius Thomas could be it for 2015.
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