We’re not talking about the mediocre linebacker that was on the Green Bay Packers’ 2016 roster. We’re talking about the Cleveland Browns, best-in-the-game, Wisconsin native and Badger great Joe Thomas.
We’ve always felt terrible for that guy that he’s had to toil as a member of the NFL’s junior varsity squad. There was also a time when we were hoping that the Packers would made a trade for Thomas and bring him home.
There were even rumored to be discussions about such a possible deal. This was when that turnstile, Marshall Newhouse, and later, holding machine David Bakhtiari were manning the left tackle position in Green Bay.
Now, of course, we’re all in agreement that Bakhtiari has turned into a dominant force at left tackle. That wasn’t the case prior to the 2016 season, though.
So you can understand how one might dream of the best left tackle in the game protecting the best quarterback in the game.
Thomas has dreamed of that too.
“It’s hard not to think about it, especially when you watch those guys in the playoffs and you see all the wins and how fun it is to play on that type of an offense that is just driving down the field consistently and scoring,” Thomas said. “And then you get pretty jealous when you see the tackle whiff, airball on a block, fall on his face and the quarterback throws a first-down strike before the defensive end even touches [him]. And you’re going, ‘Why can’t that ever happen to me? Are you serious?’”
That’s funny and sad.
We know Thomas is committed to the Browns. However, he’s protected 27 different quarterbacks in his 10-year career. A lot of those guys were straight-up garbage.
How could you not dream of protecting Aaron Rodgers or Brett Favre, especially if you play the offensive line and you’re from Wisconsin?
Unfortunately for Thomas, with Bakhtiari playing like he is and holding a fat new contract, that will never happen.