June 15, 2024

After finishing last season with a 4-13 record, the Washington Commanders are aiming to improve. They are making offseason moves to strengthen their roster, with the hope and expectation of becoming a better team. In discussing one key move each NFL team should make, Matt Holder of Bleacher Report suggested that the Commanders sign two-time All-Pro Michael Thomas.

“Providing Jayden Daniels with as much support as possible should be the Commanders’ top priority,” Holder wrote on May 25. “Currently, third-round pick Luke McCaffrey is projected to be the starting slot receiver, but he was considered a reach by B/R’s scouting department, ranking 290th on the final big board.

“Although Thomas is past his prime, adding the veteran wideout could benefit Daniels and Washington by seeing what he still has to offer.”

Michael Thomas Had a Historic Start to His Career

Dallas Cowboys logical fit for Michael Thomas former New Orleans Saints WR  - Blogging The Boys

During his first four seasons with the New Orleans Saints, the former $96 million star Michael Thomas was unmatched in the league.

Averaging 117 receptions, 1,378 yards, and eight touchdowns per season, Thomas positioned himself as a future Hall of Famer. Luke Johnson of Nola.com noted that only 17 players in NFL history have reached these numbers in a single season.

“That was the average statistical line in Thomas’ first four seasons with the Saints — 117 catches, 1,378 yards, and eight touchdowns,” Johnson wrote. “Only 17 players in NFL history have hit each of those benchmarks in a single season.”

Thomas’ impressive stats didn’t stop there. He holds the record for most catches in an NFL season, with 149 receptions in 2019. That year, he accumulated 1,725 yards and nine touchdowns, earning the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year award.

However, since then, Thomas has been plagued by injuries, playing in just 20 games from the 2020 to 2023 seasons. He missed the entire 2021 season and has managed only 1,057 yards since 2020.

How Thomas Would Help the Washington Commanders

If the Washington Commanders are seeking a low-risk investment at wide receiver, Michael Thomas might be a viable option. His health remains a major concern, and he has previously made comments blaming teammates, such as Derek Carr, for his injuries, referring to a “bad ball.”

Despite his injuries, Thomas has not performed poorly when on the field. Last season, he averaged 11.5 yards per reception, catching 39 passes for 448 yards. Although these numbers are not as impressive as his peak performance, his addition would have bolstered the Commanders’ receiving corps, which had only four players exceed 389 receiving yards last season.

ESPN says Dallas Cowboys should sign ex-Saints WR Michael Thomas

With rookie quarterback Jayden Daniels likely to experience growing pains, the Commanders’ lack of veteran presence at wide receiver could be problematic. However, Thomas’ ability to stay healthy is uncertain at this stage of his career.

An incentivized deal could make sense for the Commanders, as Thomas was on track for nearly 1,000 yards last season when healthy. Nevertheless, his injury history is a significant concern.

Dean Jones of Riggo’s Rag noted that this deal would have been a no-brainer a few years ago, but now there are considerable risks.

“Thomas remains on the proverbial scrap heap after the New Orleans Saints went in a different direction,” Jones wrote on May 26. “This would be a no-brainer a few years ago, but there are plenty of red flags attached to this potential move.”

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