Julius Thomas a trade piece?
The Jaguars have been know to trade away players, but are they willing to part with Julius Thomas in what appears to be a lost season?
With the NFL trade deadline looming today at 4 PM, don’t expect any (more) big names to change teams. The Patriots traded yet another defensive playmaker in a contract year, but New England marches to the beat of their own drum. Most teams don’t make much noise around the trade deadline, especially now with the added value given to draft picks.
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The Jaguars haven’t been completely quiet in terms of trades over the last few years (
was traded in-season), but this is not the year to expect a veteran to be shown the door.
One guy who might actually want to be a in a different situation is tight end Julius Thomas.
Danny Kelly over at the Ringer went over a handful of players who ‘should’ be traded, including the Jaguars prized free agent acquisition:
"Remember Julius Thomas? You know, the guy who caught 12 touchdowns in both 2013 and 2014? The unguardable offensive chess piece that Peyton Manning and the Broncos utilized all over the formation? The unstoppable red zone threat with great size, speed, and soft hands? Yeah, we barely do either.Once known to be one of the most terrifying mismatch nightmares in the NFL, Thomas, who signed a five-year, $46 million deal with Jacksonville in 2015, is stuck in an underperforming, underwhelming Jaguars offense captained by Blake Bortles, whose regression as a passer once again has Jacksonville in last place in the AFC South. As Bortles has struggled with fundamentals and a loss of confidence, his receiving weapons have suffered — and none more so than the versatile Thomas, who has just 19 catches for 224 yards and three touchdowns this season. Somebody please find this guy an offense that will actually let him victimize linebackers in coverage"
Thomas has been a disappointment since signing with the Jaguars, with some of the blame being his own thanks to a slightly doughy-looking physique in 2015. Thomas looked more ready to contribute this year, but Bortles’ struggles have handicapped the entire offense.
While it almost certainly won’t happen, it would be interested to see what kind of offers Thomas would garner. I’d say no more than a third round pick, but a team desperate for a playmaker at the tight end position (maybe the Falcons?) could give up a second rounder.