Donald Thomas: A Low Cost Free Agent Option for the New York Jets

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Sept. 30, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New England Patriots guard Donald Thomas (64) waits for quarterback Tom Brady (12) to call a play change during the first half against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

We have a lot of things to discuss when it comes to the Jets. How is the quarterback situation going to resolve itself? What is going to happen with Darrelle Revis? Will he be traded? What about Cromartie? Are the Jets going to be able to bring LaRon Landry back? There are a lot of questions that need to be answered between now and the time minicamp opens.

One question that doesn’t get a lot of discussion is the offensive guard question. Both Matt Slauson and Brandon Moore are free agents. They have Vladimir Ducasse waiting in the wings, so….OK don’t all get excited at once. He scares us all. They might very well be priced out of keeping Brandon Moore around, as he is 32 years old and made $4,000,000 per year on his last contract with the Jets. A hometown discount might be the only way to keep him around.

There is a lot of talk about the Jets addressing this position with their first pick of the draft in April, the 9th overall. If you believe a lot of the Mock Drafts, Chance Warmack from Alabama will be available when the Jets choice comes up. The question is, do you commit a high first round pick to an offensive guard? There are a lot of arguments for doing it, as many say that Warmack should be able to anchor an offensive line for the next decade.

To me, as I have noted before, 9th overall is very high to commit to the guard position. For one, even with the new rookie salary schedule, the Jets would have to commit a lot of money to a lineman that doesn’t play left tackle. Secondly, you don’t NEED to draft that high to pick a guard, case and point being Brandon Moore. He was undrafted, and has been a major cog in the Jets offensive line for years. My opinion is that the #9 pick could be used for more of a skilled position such as an edge pass rusher, as there should be some special ones available when the Jets choose.

So, how do the Jets address this problem at the guard position? A low cost, high reward option might just be an unrestricted free agent from the enemy, the New England Patriots. Meet, my friends, Donald Thomas.

Turn the page, and we will talk about how he graded out compared to Matt Slauson.

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Topics: Donald Thomas, Matt Slauson, New York Jets, Nfl Free Agency

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  • JetOrange

    Certainly and option, but Thomas has to be at least the same cost as Slauson , possibly a little more. Slauson has played both Guard positions, but I thought he was impressive at Center when Mangold went down. Matt has worked with Mangold and Brick extensively, and his pass blocking could make him a good fit in Marty’s offense. Thomas , as noted, is a better run blocker,but I think he has a higher ceiling. In any event I think the market for both of these guys will be 2.5 – 3.5 a year

    • TheJetPress

      You think it will be that high? I am not sure they have shown enough to be worth that much, you might be right though.

      • JetOrange

        I think Tannenbaum agrees with you, MT understood the market, that’s why the Guard rotation with Vlad. Always a demand for healthy expieranced OL, it really helps that Slauson can play Center. Will probably wid up in Dallas back with Callahan

        • TheJetPress

          No!!! I think the same as the fired guy! No!!!! LOL. I had forgotten that Slauson played some center.

  • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

    Donald Thomas is easily superior to Slauson, and I honestly think the Patriots should start Thomas over Dan Connolly; that’s how much I think of Thomas, no slight to Connolly. This guy is going to come extremely cheap if he leaves the Patriots (I sure hope we keep him), and he will be a solid starter in this league.

    • TheJetPress

      I like him too Joe. Thanks for stopping by.

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