Not a major award, but certainly Thomas deserves a post for his contributions to the Browns. (Photo from Browns 247.com)
You would think that a former offensive lineman would pay more attention to the Browns rookie offensive tackle. Shame on me. Truth is that Joe Thomas has had an outstanding rookie year, and it is starting to be noticed around the league. Joe Thomas earned the league’s AFC Rookie of the Month for November. Joshua Cribbs was also honored as the AFC’s special teams player of the month.
Joe Thomas is performing at a very high level, at a very difficult position. He certainly has benefited from outstanding play from Eric Steinbach, lined up right beside him. But make no mistake, Thomas is the real deal at left tackle. Does he have a chance to be the rookie of the year in the league? No. Simply because of the year that Adrian Peterson is having. Ironic that many fans complained about the Browns taking Thomas over Peterson. It seems that the future is lined with pro-bowls for both of these players, barring injury.
Thomas has kept top pass-rushers off Derek Anderson this season. He has lined up against the likes of Mario Williams, Terrell Suggs, James Harrison, Jason Taylor and Richard Seymour. In 7 games against the Browns, those players had 4 sacks against the Browns, and I can’t verify if all of those came against Thomas. My memory says Jason Taylor’s was not, neither was Suggs’. In any case, that is outstanding for a rookie LT. In addition to his pass blocking, he has shown tremendous rush blocking technique. He pulls well and blocks well down field.
Because of the signing of Steinbach, and the drafting of Thomas the Browns’ offense is ready to fire on all cylinders.