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2017 NFL Draft Profile: Defensive End Solomon Thomas

Jul 15, 2016; Hollywood, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal defensive end Solomon Thomas poses during Pac-12 media day at Hollywood & Highland. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 15, 2016; Hollywood, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal defensive end Solomon Thomas poses during Pac-12 media day at Hollywood & Highland. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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In this 2017 NFL Draft profile, we look at the strengths and weaknesses of DE Solomon Thomas out of Stanford.

A former top-25 national recruit and one of the best defensive linemen’s in college, Stanford product Solomon Thomas, is an explosive defender entering the 2017 NFL Draft at 6’3″ 273-pounds. Thomas red-shirted his first season at Stanford and recorded a solid year finishing 2015 with 39 tackles, 10.5 for loss, and 5 sacks.

He also earned himself an honorable All-Pac-12 mention that year. The following season, Thomas received multiple rewards such as the Morris trophy as the Pac-12 defensive player of the year. He also was the Cardinals leader in tackles with 62 and sacked opposing quarterbacks eight times. Thomas tremendously improved his game during his short time at Stanford.

His performances in huge games such as their Rose Bowl victory over Iowa and his Bowl performance against North Carolina has opened the eyes of scouts, NFL team organizations and current NFL offensive linemen that’ll be lined up parallel to him each week.

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STRENGTHS

Versatile athlete who has lined up at multiple positions. Great ability to break through blocks. Powerful player for his small stature as a defensive lineman. Tremendous athleticism. Extremely tough defender to block. Always manages to get his hands on opposing quarterbacks. Scopes out gaps well. Physical and aggressive defender. Solid field vision and awareness. Stuffs the run well. A tackling machine. Specializes in tackles for loss.

WEAKNESSES

Experts are concerned with his size for a defensive end. Considered to have a small stature for his position. Scouts are afraid he’ll struggle to maintain a decent amount of weight on his 6’3″ frame. Recorded seven offsides penalties last year. Larger interior NFL offensive linemen may have his number. Will need to bulk up in weight. Extremely physical with his hands. NFL referees will be trigger happy with penalty flags if he can’t keep his hands out of offensive linemen’s faces.

VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS

Next: 2017 NFL Draft Profile: Defensive lineman Taco Charlton

DRAFT DAY PREDICTION

Overall, explosive and power defender for his size. Experts believe Thomas has the ability to fit well in any teams defense. Thomas has the ability to be a highly effective player in the pros. His play is expected to carry over nicely into the NFL as the young defensive end prospect is projected to be a first-round selection come day one of the 2017 NFL Draft.

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