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The New Orleans Saints had one of the steals of the 2010 draft in tight end Jimmy Graham, a four-year basketball player for the Miami Hurricanes who stayed on campus to play one year of football. Thomas is looking to take the same route to the NFL after walking onto the football team last spring after playing four years of basketball at Portland State.
Also like Graham, Thomas had very little football experience even in high school, playing just one season before focusing on basketball.
However, at 6-feet-5 and 251 pounds, Thomas has the size and athleticism to warrant a mid-round flier in hopes of uncovering another Graham. The NFL is chock full of former hoops stars who have excelled at tight end, including perennial Pro Bowlers Tony Gonzalez and Antonio Gates.
Thomas impressed at the East-West Shrine Game and has the size and length to threaten the seam.
Thomas, a first team All-Big Sky Conference selection in 2010, had 29 receptions for 453 yards and two touchdowns in 2010. It was his first year of collegiate football after playing four seasons for the Portland State basketball team.
Familiar to Viking fans for a different reason - he starred on the Viking basketball team for four seasons... set school records for career games played (121), career wins (78), career field goals percentage (.663)... also participated on two Big Sky Champion teams and two NCAA Tournaments (2008 and 2009)... twice named to the Big Sky All-Tournament team... made game-winning dunk with 3.5 seconds left to play in beating Montana State for the 2009 Big Sky Tournament Championship... averaged 10.8 points, 5.9 rebounds and and shot a school-record .671 from the field as a senior.
Son of Greg and Toria Thomas... born June 27, 1988... brothers are Trenton and Marcus... earned his degree in Business Administration, will graduate this spring... hobbies are hanging out with friends, reading and basketball.
Draft Scout Player News
01/15/14 - TE Julius Thomas could be an X-factor against the Patriots. Thomas led the Broncos in receiving yardage against the Chargers and has returned to form after suffering an ankle injury that kept him out for two games, including the loss at New England in Week 12.
01/13/14 - TE Julius Thomas had the most eventful game of any Bronco on Sunday. He caught two third-down passes on the game-sealing drive at the end of regulation and led the Broncos with 76 yards on six catches, but also dropped one pass, fumbled after another reception and committed a false-start penalty.
01/02/14 - TE Julius Thomas became the Broncos' first Pro Bowl tight end since Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe when he was named to the all-star game's roster last week. Thomas was third in the league among tight ends with 12 touchdowns, the most ever for a Bronco at his position.
12/09/13 - TE Julius Thomas returned to the lineup Sunday after missing two games with a knee sprain. He caught his 11th touchdown pass of the season, setting a Broncos record for tight ends.
12/04/13 - TE Julius Thomas practiced on a limited basis Wednesday. He has missed the last two games with a knee injury.
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