Devin Thomas has never taken off as a wide receiver in the NFL.
What are the odds he will with the Chicago Bears? That’s hard to say right now. But the Bears certainly don’t have the kind of depth chart Thomas was up against as a member of the New York Giants. Opportunity could come with his new team.
The Bears announced Wednesday night they had come to terms with Thomas, who was a special teams savior for the Giants in the postseason, on a one-year deal. It’s a low-risk investment and Thomas has upside on special teams.
But, surely the Bears are curious if the second-round draft pick from 2008 can finally blossom on offense. After a huge senior season at Michigan State in 2007 (79 receptions, 1,260 yards, 8 touchdowns), Thomas has been almost non-existent on offense in the NFL. He couldn’t produce for the Washington Redskins, who drafted him, when there was almost no one ahead of him on the depth chart. In his NFL career, he has 43 catches for 482 yards and three touchdowns.
But Thomas is 6-2, 221 pounds, and maybe, just maybe he can make a connection with quarterback Jay Cutler. Of course, the Bears finally got Cutler a proven performer by trading for Brandon Marshall. But with Johnny Knox sidelined as he recovers from a spinal cord injury, chances could be there for Thomas. The Bears have Earl Bennett and Devin Hester to work into the scheme. Maybe Thomas gets a chance to show what he can do.
While some thought Thomas would be a first-round pick when he came out, the knock against him was he had produced in just one college season. He’s yet to produce in the NFL on offense. We’ll see if that changes.
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune
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