Did The Kansas City Chiefs Draft A Wide Receiver Without Anyone Knowing It?

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Oh sure, you’re all very disappointed. Sure, this guy isn’t what you were hoping for. Sure, he’s too tiny to be considered a legitimate receiving threat. Blah, blah, blah….

De’Anthony Thomas could end up being the most dynamic wide receiver taken in the 2014 draft. That’s right. I said it. So, you wanted WR O’Dell Beckham but ended up with nothing huh? You may want to take another look. I believe DAT is going to be “The Man.”

“WR? What’s he been smoking” you say?

What position do you think the Chiefs drafted Thomas to play? Runningback? Ha! I don’t think so. Sure, he’s been working with RB coach Eric Bienemy but I’m not so sure E.B. really has anyone else to work with right now. Plus, as a hybrid WR slash RB DAT is going to have to get a little work in at RB sooner or latter so it might as well be now.

I’m pretty sure that the RB position is going to be the Jamaal Charles-Knile Davis Show… and as in previous years with McCluster, DAT will at times line up there but he should in no way be confused with an NFL running back. Although I’ve seen DAT be effective between the tackles I’d bet dollars to donuts that he won’t make 5 runs this season anywhere between Fisher and Stephenson.

No, what you might want to confuse him with is a guy named DeSean Jackson. Am I saying he’ll become DeSean Jackson. Yea. Pretty much.

DeSean Jackson: 5-10, 175. 4.35, 40.  Second round pick in 2008.

De’Anthony Thomas: 5’8 5/8″ , 174. 4.37, 40*. Fourth round pick in 2014.

* Note: De’Anthony Thomas’ 40 time, he’s in no way slower than Mr. Jackson.

So, 1 and 3/8ths  inches plus one whole pound separate the two.

Sean Keeler of Fox Sports spells out the role Thomas will fill for the Chiefs,

“Thomas might be the most anticipated of all the Chiefs rookies this spring-slash-summer, largely because he’s a skill player who has a shot to make an impression the fastest. The club lost slot receiver/wingback/return ace Dexter McCluster to free agency and, ostensibly, drafted Thomas — a one-man highlight machine during his college days, accounting for 46 all-purpose touchdowns from 2011-13 — to plug in as Dex’s replacement.”

But, but, but… De’Anthony Thomas worked with Chiefs’ RB Coach Eric Bieniemy at mini-camp.  Soooo, he’ll also be working with special teams coach Dave Toub. And he’ll also be working with David Culley, wide receiver coach and Assistant Head Coach whose likely had his hands fuller than Bienemy so far. So, Bienemy is baby sitting him for now.

On draft day, Stanford University Head Coach David Shaw was sitting in with NFL Network’s Rich Eisen and the gang and shared his observation about De”Anthony Thomas falling as far as he did in this draft. He said, “Tavon Austin ruined it for him.” Austin was injured late in the season, couldn’t find the field and only produced 418 receiving yards on the year.

Otherwise, DAT could have gone much higher in this draft… or any other draft.

I usually expound and explicate my views here until I’ve said everything I have to say on a subject. However, in the case of De’Anthony Thomas serving as a wide receiver… I’d like to offer a video collection I put together of some of his receiving exploits. If you’re at all like me then you’ve already spent some time watching DAT highlights. However, I noticed the primary focus of his highlights are, firstly, his runs from scrimmage, and secondly, his kick return highlights but not to be forgotten in any way are his ample receiving highlights. So, below you’ll find a collection I have named, “De’Anthony Thomas The Wide Receiver.” Think of it as his… cache of catches.

Before you watch, let me tell you what I see. I see an exceptional athlete who makes one handed receptions look commonplace. I see a receiver who adjusts to the ball in mid flight to make back shoulder catches. I see a receiver who already catches the ball with his hands away from his body. I see a player as exciting to come to the Chiefs as I’ve ever seen. He’s half Jamaal Charles and half Dante Hall but, nearly never reminds me of Dexter McCluster… and that’s a good thing.

Be sure and look in at the 5:00 minute mark to see how he gets the defensive back who’s in front of him all turned around but never touches him before he gets to the end zone. Pure pinball wizardry. Maybe that’s what I’ll call him now: The Pinball Wizard.

Enjoy. And when your done let me know if you think he’s more of a WR than a RB.

In case you’re one of those people who goes around singing “Short People” by Randy Newman… and you take yourself seriously for some reason… then here’s a list of Pro Bowl players under 6 feet tall in 2013 and 2014:


Marshawn Lynch, 5-11

Earl Thomas, 5-10

Russell Wilson, 5-11

Tim Jennings, 5-8

Jamaal Charles, 5-11

Ray Rice, 5-9

C.J. Spiller, 5-11

Wes Welker, 5-9

Johnathan Joseph, 5-11

Frank Gore, 5-9

London Fletcher, 5-10

Leon Washington, 5-8

Donte Whitner, 5-11

Brandon Flowers, 5-9

DeSean Jackson, 5-10

Eddie Lacy, 5-11

Alfred Morris, 5-9

LeSean McCoy, 5-11

Dexter McCluster, 5-8, 165

Joe Haden, 5-11

Alterraun Verner, 5-10

Eric Weddle, 5-11

Troy Polamalu, 5-10

Antonio Brown, 5-10


And do you remember this guy?

Dante Hall, 5-8


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  • Hawthorne

    Always love your stuff Laddie. Pretty bold optimism, but I think you certainly could be right. Agree on the McCluster point 100%. DAT should be a huge upgrade.

    • tm1946


      • Hawthorne

        Well he’s faster 4.37 vs 4.44 and more explosive 10’3″ Broad Jump vs 9′ 10″. They are pretty much the same in other categories.

  • Deaudrey Dre-Mac MacDonald

    Laddie it’s too early to be showing us this dude you gonna make me want football!! Now!! Lol

  • jimfromkcj

    Laddie, as long as the Chief’s have a penchant for drafting midgets in a man’s game of football the will never win another super bowl. Is it because Lamar and his son are undersized and have a phantacy of guys their size making it in the NFL. To give a couple of examples that any one can look at to see what it takes to be a winner in the NFL, just look at how the draft goes in the early rounds in comparison to the late rounds. The average size of players goes down as the draft goes down. And look at the successful teams and you will usually see when they line up with the Chiefs, they just look bigger and seem to be faster off the mark.

    • Deadmeat

      Tell Wes Welker, Steve Smith, Drew Brees, list goes on, they’re midgets and can’t play ball and will never get a SB ring…:(

      • berttheclock

        Percy Harvin is five eleven and, geez, how did that SB ring end up on his finger.

        • Darin Alan Drury

          Russell Wilson likes his Super Bowl ring.

        • micah stephenson

          Uh ok. We get it. There are some good short players. I don’t see many people complaining about height.

          • Kisersosay

            Come on Micah…..admit it ….you are prejudiced against short people…that is just not right. BTW did you know Alex is over 6′ tall?

          • micah stephenson

            I am a lil bit. In football you want the biggest fastest guys you can get.

      • Kisersosay

        Don’t mind him….that is just Jim’s daily rant against Dorsey. It is comical how many ways he comes up with to bag on Dorsey and Reid….

  • Sofia Caden

    Very accurate mock draft http://goo.gl/TvWnQJ

  • berttheclock

    Geez, Laddie, I thought it was for 4th and goal type runs.

    Hey, I kept referring to Dexter as The Pinball Wizard from the days of the Who. But, just this once, you may borrow that name.

    He was part of a great draft where everyone of the players drafted was THE BEST PLAYER AVAILABLE. Dorsey out thought the pundits and brought in a great class. Too many myths flying around the league by both pundits and fans. Oh, you must have tall wide outs, oh, you must have tall defensive backs, short QBs can’t make it in the NFL, small players can’t make it in the NFL. All of those are pure Horse Pucky. There are exceptions to every stinking so-called “rule” in the NFL. Quality football players do not come out of computers. The ones who can play, no matter their so-called limitations will PLAY. DAT was a steal as were several other of the six picks. BTW, Mr Dorsey drafted for speed at several positions.

  • Stacy D. Smith

    Good work, Laddie! I think everyone’s excited about what De’Anthony Thomas can do in year one.

  • berttheclock

    Steve Smith, formerly of the Panthers and now with the Ravens, is five nine. He has gone to the Pro Bowl five times and has set numerous records as a wide receiver,

    Russell Wilson, the QB, led the Seahawks to the Super Bowl and won. He stands five eleven.

    • Stacy D. Smith

      All that matters is if you can play.

      • tm1946

        No matter the spin, beware of a guy who works with 3 different coaches and does everything, just not to good at any of them.
        Can he play….. McCluster could play and how many super bowls did he help bring in.

        • Stacy D. Smith

          The same number of Super Bowls that Jamaal Charles, Tamba Hali, Justin Houston, Derrick Johnson, Brandon Flowers, and a host of other Chiefs players have. The only question is whether or not Thomas can succeed in the role he was drafted for. Let’s not overthink this.

  • berttheclock

    In 2012, the Panthers played the Chiefs and lost 27-21. But, consider this. Dwayne Bowe is six two. In that game, he caught 4 passes for 64 yards, a 16 yd av, with a long of 21 and did not score. The five nine Steve Smith caught 5 passes for 120 yards, a 24 yard average, with a long of 53 and scored one TD which put the Panthers in the lead.

  • Travis Forsyth

    can kind of see some dante hall in him.

  • berttheclock

    Why did not Dorsey try to draft Trezelle Jenkins II, who stands six seven and weighs 317 pounds or Sylvester Morris, Jr, who stands six three as a wide out. Actually, those sons do not exist as far as I know, but, Jenkins had height and weight, while Morris had height. Where, oh where are they now?

  • micah stephenson

    5’11 is not short at rb position.

  • micah stephenson

    Yes they did! With Captain Checkdown at QB, the rbs are the #1 wrs. We don’t need wrs that run 30 yards downfield becus Ass11 won’t b looking anywhere close to down there. We need players that can take a 1 yrd pass and turn it into a big play.

  • cd3382

    AS is salivating at the mouth right now. DAT has natural hands and I smell screens all day.

  • Tyler Renollet

    I’m a fan of how he knows he is a small guy, doesn’t take unnecessary contact, also with Jamaal being our leading receiver last year I can see him doing a lot of things that jamaal did last year to rack up yards. Also I believe that the slot receiver will be played by about 3 different guys throughout the year, that’s why he is not just with receivers.

  • Arrowhead Magic

    I’m not sure what style of offense Oregon runs but I saw a lot of plays that we drew up last season for both Jamaal and McCluster. DAT is looking to make a big impact right from the start.

  • ChiefTucson

    De’Anthony Thomas and Jamal Charles will blow up opposing defenses. DCs will have nightmares about these guys. Can’t wait to see them both in the backfield.

  • Lyle Graversen

    Great read Laddie,

    I’ll play devil’s advocate here for the sake of getting another opinion. I liked the DAT pick and I think he has some nice playmaking upside. I think he fills the return specialist role from day one and has a chance to contribute on offense too. HOWEVER, I think KC fans may be setting themselves up for disappointment with how excited people seem to be getting. Isn’t De’Anthony Thomas pretty similar to LaMichael James who has hardly seen the field for SF while they continuously looked for WR options. While I think DAT has better hands than James, James was thought highly enough to get picked in the 2nd round. Also, while people are comparing DAT to DeSean Jackson, it should be pointed out that DAT’s own college coach Chip Kelly needed to replace DeSean Jackson in this draft and he took two WRs over DAT in Jordan Matthews and DAT’s college teammate Josh Huff.

    Do I like the pick of Thomas and think he can help this team? Yes.
    Do I think we might be setting the bar a little high for him right now? Yes.

    • ladner morse

      Lyle. Cool. We should actually do a debate sometime.

      Of course we’ll never know until the season has started but I will say that Andy Reid will take a player like DAT… and he’s shown in the past that he does this… and takes that players and his system makes him into a star.

      He does the same thing with QBs. That’s why I’m interested to see how Aaron Murray does two years from now. Most every QB that I know of has spent time on IR so you would think at some point Murray will get a chance on the field. When that happens Reid is the best in the league at placing his players in positions to succeed so the Chiefs could end up with a QB who has trade value … or depending on how Alex Smith progresses… or doesn’t… Murray could end up in the saddle for the Chiefs.

      The point is… the same things you’ve said could also be said of Aaron Murray and the QB position. In any event… I’m WAY excited about the future of several different players… including DAT. Who I still believe will be “The Man.”

      • Lyle Graversen

        I hope you’re right and I definitely think its possible. People just seem to be acting like they think he’ll be an elite playmaker as a rookie. While it could happen it would be a rare find to get that kind of impact play maker in the fourth round (and that was higher than most mocks had him going) so I’m just saying let’s not set the bar too high. If he ended the year as the main return guy and makes an impact there and throws in another 150 yards rushing and 400 yards receiving with a couple of TDs that’d be a great rookie year for a 4th rounder.

  • Voter4America

    Is he wearing #6 with the Chiefs? KC had another scat back who wore #6. Warren McVea, back in the ’60s.

    • ladner morse

      DAT is wearing #1 for now.Ryan Succop already has #6.

  • Stan Colbert

    That doesn’t look like DMC! Man Oregon wears some ugly uniforms! It was reported DAT caught a one-handed pass at his knees without breaking stride.