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Devin Thomas ready to take on leadership role in Shanahan system

Beginning his third season, wide receiver Devin Thomas said he's ready to assume a bigger role in the offense and locker room.

"I just feel like this is my time to step up and really be a leader around here," Thomas said the other day at Redskins Park. "I've finally matured to the point where I'm ready for that role. So I definitely look forward to taking on that challenge."

Thomas moved ahead of Malcolm Kelly during the middle of the season and showed encouraging signs as the starting flanker. During a 33-30 loss in overtime in Week 13 to the New Orleans Saints, Thomas established career highs with seven receptions for 100 yards (a 14.3-yard average) and two touchdowns. He finished the season with 25 receptions for 325 yards (a 13.0-yard average) and three touchdowns.

In Coach Mike Shanahan's offense, Thomas expects to be on the move often. "Well definitely moving around a lot," he said. "The coaches are expected to put us in situations to be successful. Not necessarily slot, or outside, [but] pretty much move you around and get the best match up."

By Jason Reid  |  April 3, 2010; 7:00 AM ET
Categories:  Mike Shanahan  
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Next: Bradford looking forward to visiting with Redskins on Tuesday

Comments

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Posted by: JorieAngel | April 3, 2010 7:11 AM | Report abuse

woke up with a morning wood. Saw we signed Willie Parker, and it went down.

Posted by: iH8dallas | April 3, 2010 7:21 AM | Report abuse

well, that's one reaction to that...seems really unneccesary

Posted by: JohnDinHouston | April 3, 2010 7:30 AM | Report abuse

This is the greatest time of year to be a Redskin fan. The passion, the excitement. Anticipating the big prize. I hate the offseason: September-January.

Posted by: shuckandjive | April 3, 2010 7:30 AM | Report abuse

but, I think Shanahan is really signalling that Campbell's going to be his QB for at least one year; he's signed two veteran RBs with maybe 2 years left in each of them - it seems clear that the 'Skins are going to try to focus on the run short term.

Posted by: JohnDinHouston | April 3, 2010 7:34 AM | Report abuse

Well, we won't be drafting any RB or TE this time around. WR's either. So offensive help will be pretty much limited to o-line and qb. Having signed REXosaurus tell's me we can either:

1- not match offers if there are any and get a first
2- trade CAMPBELL for a pick and/or player
3- sign him up if he's willing.

If he goes, we pick BRADFORD or CLAUSEN.
If he's there on draft day when we pick in the first round, we take a line-man. Neither will be a #4 value pick in my opinion because the best qb and ot will be gone.

Posted by: glawrence007 | April 3, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse

was a bit unnecessary

Posted by: iH8dallas | April 3, 2010 7:40 AM | Report abuse

I think the best qb, ot and dt will be gone at #4. With the ARENA brand of football being played in the NFL today, if you can't get a great passer, you must take a great pass defender. That's the next best thing. I think the SKINS need the best value with their first pick, and BERRY not McCLAIN looks like the one. Call me crazy - many of you have, but I just don't see any other way short of a trade. That almost mandates a trade of a great REDSKIN for another first. Otherwise, the rebuild takes five years not three.

Posted by: glawrence007 | April 3, 2010 7:51 AM | Report abuse

I know I'm going against the flow, but...

I'm all for signing Flozell Adams. I know the argument about not signing Girls. I don't care about that. Do we have anyone on the roster who is as good? He has started all 16 games in each of the last four seasons. In fact, he has started all 16 games in 10 of the last 11 years! Yes, he gets some penalties, but who doesn't? Right now, we want competition at every position. Adams turns 35 in a couple of months, so he could still have a couple of seasons left in his tank. I think we need his experience. Our OL will be better immediately. That just gives us more flexibility in the draft, also.

Posted by: frediefritz | April 3, 2010 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Actions speak louder than words...'real' leaders don't need to talk about what they are going to do, they just move forward. Devin Thomas is a punk and this chesty attitude will clearly cost him in the locker room and with the coaches. We will see how much of a 'leader' he is when he gets challenged over the next 4 months. My bet is that he starts whining about not being given a chance, etc. before fading into the background for a third season.

Posted by: Ebola_22039 | April 3, 2010 7:56 AM | Report abuse

good morning gl

Posted by: westjr88 | April 3, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

4th will be devastated. No Spiller.

Posted by: SkinsfaninKaneohe | April 2, 2010 3:32 PM

All 3 of these dudes ain't gonna make it to the final 53......

Spiller is still an option if Okung isn't there.....

Posted by: 4thFloor | April 3, 2010 8:04 AM | Report abuse

4th, I'm trying to figure how would you carry it if Orakpo turned out to be a bust.

You'd probably have welt marks on your shoulder from patting it so hard.

Posted by: RedDMV | April 2, 2010 3:09 PM

Not really....I just mention it when someone says Vinny finally made a great choice or Vinny finally got it right or Who possed Vinny when he made this choice.....

Posted by: 4thFloor | April 3, 2010 8:08 AM | Report abuse

west jr:

Hidy. What's up in PHILLY? You a PHILLY PHANATIC?

Did you know an EMILY DIGGES? No telling her name now and with so many DIGGES' in the area hard to know. I guess GEORGE would.

PORT HAYWOOD and SUSAN, then NEW POINT. I still see those roads and people the way they were almost fifty years ago.

Posted by: glawrence007 | April 3, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

I see LJ and CP26 making the final roster....No one wanted Willie P anyway...

File this under 'Classic M Shanny scare tactics'....and keep it moving....But Yes, CP does need a fire lit under him.....But none of these dudes are all around RBs like him....

...And they still have no change of pace back...

Current draft day Trade BAit:

MK12 (look for Shanny to get Shipley in the 3rd/4th if still available)
Montgomery
CR22
Rocky Mac

Posted by: 4thFloor | April 3, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

footballoutsiders.com published their annual o-line continuity stats -- nobody's surprised to find the Skins started more different players (11) than any other team, but Buffalo actually had more players taking snaps. The Jets played virtually the whole season with an intact o-line. The Giants, who'd done the same the season before, fell way, way off and wound up in the middle of the pack in terms of continuity. Maybe that had something to do with their struggles.

Still, with the exception of Tampa Bay (which plays the same folks and perhaps they just can't block), it does seem like the teams with the healthiest, most stable lines wind up in the playoffs more often...

Posted by: Samson151 | April 3, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

The team with the biggest drop in o-line continuity season over season: Denver. Their line was among the league's most stable in '08 and among the least in '09.

Posted by: Samson151 | April 3, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

So the Iggles finally dumped Sheldon Brown, along with Chris Gocong, to the Browns for reserve LB Alex Hall and two picks, a fourth and a fifth this year. That seems entirely $$-driven -- Philly just didn't want to pay the guy. But they'll miss him in coverage, and Holmgren gets a tough guy for the secondary.

Posted by: Samson151 | April 3, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

Many things could have helped our O-line look better last year.
This team needs speed in a bad way. None of the rb's last year had anything close to breakaway speed and it showed. If they had, the Line looks better as they don't have to hold the blocks as long. Playing fast, making cuts, getting to top-end speed in a couple steps, is why we need a fast young rb. (Along with many other things!)

Posted by: 1965skinsfan | April 3, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

"During a 33-30 loss in overtime in Week 13 to the New Orleans Saints, Thomas established career highs with seven receptions for 100 yards (a 14.3-yard average) and two touchdowns."

Problem with relying on performances from that game is that the whole team played better than it had all year and really should have won by a TD or more.

It's hard to predict how Thomas will perform this season because he's an atypical WR. His value is when he can get the ball in the open field and operate as a RB streaking through the secondary. He's not the sort to excel in the end zone or in traffic. But if you can spring him underneath, he's a holy terror.

He's not Brandon Marshall, but there are similarities.

Posted by: Samson151 | April 3, 2010 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who has to talk about becoming a leader probably won't become one.

At least until they realize that actions speak louder than words.

If you really want to be a leader, step up and be one.

Posted by: Vic1 | April 3, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Flozell for depth -- why not?

Posted by: garrena1 | April 3, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

We heard similar statements of leadership from Michael Westbrook. You don't say you're going to be la leader, you become one through actions. We'll see.

Posted by: jgluke | April 3, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Devin Thomas a leader?

How about he just focuses on learning the new playbook and holding down a starting spot.

Hopefully it won't take him another year and half to figure out where to lineup in these new plays.

Posted by: p1funk | April 3, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

I don't envy JR having to come up with several interesting subjects for us to debate every day; so let me help out my man: Is Jeremy Jarmon worth the 3rd round pick (68 overall) we are giving up this year? With the overall talent in this years draft, it appears to be another misstep by the previous FO, but I can't say that I really have followed Jarmon's development.

Posted by: elderdave1 | April 3, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

west jr:

Hidy. What's up in PHILLY? You a PHILLY PHANATIC?

Did you know an EMILY DIGGES? No telling her name now and with so many DIGGES' in the area hard to know. I guess GEORGE would.

PORT HAYWOOD and SUSAN, then NEW POINT. I still see those roads and people the way they were almost fifty years ago.

Posted by: glawrence007 | April 3, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

The weather is nice here in Philly and beings that I'm on a boat and don't have to interact with these people...everything is good.
My father graduated from Mathews High in '63 and I'm sure he knows all of them and what they would be now. The roads haven't changed much. Still about the same.

Posted by: westjr88 | April 3, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Thats ok, my wang would go down to if it saw another willie....

I thank you!!

Posted by: skinball77 | April 3, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

"The coaches are expected to put us in situations to be successful. Not necessarily slot, or outside, [but] pretty much move you around and get the best match up."

---------


Can we deduce from his statement that once the coaches put him in "situations to be successful" that success will "pretty much" naturally follow?

Posted by: Chia_Pet | April 3, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

No way to Flozell Adams. Boycott Cowboy losers, we don't need any more false starts

Posted by: whess8 | April 3, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: JorieAngel | April 3, 2010 7:11 AM

Gotta love spam for breakfast on a Saturday morning.Its not scrapple though...

Posted by: will_ga | April 3, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I think Jarmon will have a big role this year. But to be sure someone should ask Definsive Coordinator Hall exactly what his role will be. He should just wear a headset on the outside of his helmet.

Posted by: whess8 | April 3, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

scrapple?


YES!!!!!!!!

Posted by: RedDMV | April 3, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Devin ready for leadership role? No way!! Whenever a rook comes in and doesn't bother being in shape and studying after getting a bigger payday then most people will ever see, you know right away that there are character issues. Is he going to lead by telling the new rooks and vets to work and study harder than him cause he stunk his first 2 years? Before you can be a leader, you have to produce or outwork your teamates, and we haven't seen that yet from this guy except for one game. If his focus is anywhre other than reading D's so he knows where to go to get open for a change, then he will continue to be just another great athlete who's too dumb and arrogant to succeed in this league.

Posted by: dg_photofl | April 3, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

I dont see why they can't keep all 3 backs. My thought is that this is THE year to reload the O line. The consensus is that the draft is deep for O lineman. There is also a very good 24 yo LT available for a 2nd out there. We have the 4th and 36th picks in the draft. There is a good chance we could get an extra 2nd or a 3rd round pick if we trade down from the 4th pick. My point is that if we add a RT and LT and at least 1 or maybe 2 quality interior linemen, we could very realistically have an O line as good or better than when Samuels, Jansen, and Thomas were all healthy. You watch, with Shanny's coaching and schemes, we could have the best running attack in the division next year. You heard it here first.

Posted by: kenboy1 | April 3, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Devin Thomas - Once a punk always a punk.

We should sign LaDanian Thomas next.

Posted by: DesiHungama | April 3, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

"I'm all for signing Flozell Adams."

Dude got cut because he's been playing on one leg the last couple of years.

Why would you bring him here?

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | April 3, 2010 11:10 AM | Report abuse

scrapple?

YES!!!!!!!!

Posted by: RedDMV | April 3, 2010 10:38 AM

Here, Red, let me fix that for ya:

Go Duke?

YES!!!!!!!

There. That's more like it.

Posted by: League-Source | April 3, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

In recent years, the health benefits of meat as a regular part of the human diet have come into question. In a large-scale study, the consumption of red meat over a lifetime was found to raise the risk of cancer by 20 to 60 percent, while causing adverse mutations in DNA. In particular, red meat and particularly processed meat, like the popular brand names "Spam" and "Scrapple," were found to be associated with higher risk of cancers of the lung, esophagus, liver, and colon, among others."

Posted by: Chia_Pet | April 3, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Devin, show it on the field my man, then we can talk....

Posted by: chrislarry | April 3, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

the popular brand names "Spam" and "Scrapple," were found to be associated with higher risk of cancers of the lung, esophagus, liver, and colon, among others."

Posted by: Chia_Pet | April 3, 2010 11:20 AM

Duh. Scrapple's a product, not a brand name. I suppose you would also believe that "sausage", "bacon", and "moron" are brand names?

Go, Duke!

Posted by: League-Source | April 3, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

No ex-Cowboys. It's not even because I hate the Cowoboys, it's that they never produce for us.

Posted by: Original_etrod | April 3, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Duh.

Posted by: League-Source

Posted by: Chia_Pet | April 3, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

The trouble with signing F. Adams besides his age is that his heart will not be in it since he was a Cowboy for all of his life.

Posted by: JohnWWW | April 3, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Duh. Scrapple's a product, not a brand name. I suppose you would also believe that "sausage", "bacon", and "moron" are brand names?

Go, Duke!

Posted by: League-Source | April 3, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

LOL, LS. Let's see, do you have any "Moron"? Oh, wait, we have enough already.

Posted by: frediefritz | April 3, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Chia_Pet | April 3, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

samson

"It's hard to predict how Thomas will perform this season because he's an atypical WR. His value is when he can get the ball in the open field and operate as a RB streaking through the secondary."


Your analysis is on point.

And whereas he's an excellent mid range receiver, what the team lacks is a big receiver who's shown the ability to produce when deep balls come their way.

(And please don't huff and puff about M Kelly as he's yet to do more than tease.)

(And I didn't get the inanity of not getting M Mitchell on the game day roster just behind his not playing special teams.)

The Shanahans' system in both texas and denver depended on such a player more than a player who brings just Thomas' skill set.

With ARE finally gone, we have only 4 receivers.

Perhaps there's a undrafted type or low round find we can add who'll blossom into a deep threat.

Posted by: MistaMoe | April 3, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

"I don't see why they can't keep all 3 backs."

Johnson is done.

The backfield will be W Parker and C Portis next season.

Posted by: MistaMoe | April 3, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

No, Mista Moe,

CJ Spiller is done. Ain't no way they be drafting him. Natch.

Posted by: periculum | April 3, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Since free agency began on March 1, these are the guys the Skins have signed and their ages, as of Dec 1, 2010:

30 RB Willie Parker
30 CB Phillip Buchanon
34 P Josh Bidwell
30 QB Rex Grossman
31 RB Larry Johnson
30 TE Sean Ryan
31 DT Maake Kemoeatu
32 G Artis Hicks

Anyone else spot a trend?

Hmmm well the dearth of offensive linemen sticks out. Still desperately needed. Plus they are still very weak in the defensive backfield.

Have to assume that is what they will draft. As for the rest, Portoise is under 30. They have plenty of DT's under 30. They have a good tight end in Fred Davis who is under 30 and then there's Cooley. They have two QB's that are young in Campbell and Colt, if anything the avg. age at QB went down. At punter who cares as long as they guy can get the job done and not get injured doing it.

Posted by: periculum | April 3, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

30 RB Willie Parker
30 CB Phillip Buchanon
34 P Josh Bidwell
30 QB Rex Grossman
31 RB Larry Johnson
30 TE Sean Ryan
31 DT Maake Kemoeatu
32 G Artis Hicks

Anyone else spot a trend?

Okay, now I get it!! It's gonna be hard to tell these guys apart next year since so many of them are wearing the same number!! Will the NFL really let the Redskins put four guys on the field with number 30?

Posted by: League-Source | April 3, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

I've finally matured to the point where I'm ready for that role - devin thomas

if you will it, it is not a dream - walter

Posted by: chillsonic | April 3, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

30 RB Willie Parker
30 CB Phillip Buchanon
34 P Josh Bidwell
30 QB Rex Grossman
31 RB Larry Johnson
30 TE Sean Ryan
31 DT Maake Kemoeatu
32 G Artis Hicks

Anyone else spot a trend?


--------------------------

The trend is that every 4th player signed is a running back.

Posted by: dfbovey | April 3, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

I've been waiting to hear this from Devin. He's such a natural leader. It's nice to see him take on the role of "locker-reoom leader". Phplt! Lead with your actions dipsh*t. Catch the ball.

Posted by: hand_of_doom | April 3, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Thomas has about as much leadership ability as Campbell.

Posted by: coparker5 | April 3, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Devin Thomas a leader?

How about he just focuses on learning the new playbook and holding down a starting spot.

Hopefully it won't take him another year and half to figure out where to lineup in these new plays.

Posted by: p1funk | April 3, 2010 9:37 AM


What P1 said. Sorry...Like Devin, playing catch-up.

Posted by: 2ndtierfan | April 4, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

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