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Thurman Thomas was far faster than I thought he was...


Big Turk
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Saw a clip on youtube that popped up showing every Thomas TD from 88-90 and there were some really long plays where he ran away from people.  Did not remember him being that fast, but he was definitely faster than I remembered.

 

 

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He definitely had a great initial burst to go with his vision, but as far as breakaway speed, I think it was less that than great blocking by a very athletic Bills line + WRs like Andre who weren’t afraid to get their mitts dirty blocking downfield…seeing the amount of green space around Thurm so many times makes me jealous on behalf of Singletary…

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13 minutes ago, Big Turk said:

Saw a clip on youtube that popped up showing every Thomas TD from 88-90 and there were some really long plays where he ran away from people.  Did not remember him being that fast, but he was definitely faster than I remembered.

 

 

 

It's so easy to forget how talented some of those guys were.  What a great pass catcher

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My lasting memories are of him being caught from behind on long, break away runs that should have gone all the way but for his lack of speed.

 

Kenny Davis had more runs to the house than Thurman had (as I remember it) because he was that much faster.

 

I still say Thurman was as dangerous an overall offensive weapon as this league has ever seen.

 

 

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Just think, Thurman had Barry Sanders on the bench behind him at OSU. Got injured as he tore his ACL... and when he returned...Sanders went back to riding the bench. 

 

Thomas fell to Buffalo in the second round, pick 40 because most teams thought he was overworked in College and all used up...also that knee injury. 7 RB's were taken ahead of Thurman in that 88 draft. 

 

The one thing Dan Marino never had at Miami was a Thurman Thomas at RB. John Elway didn't win a SB until Terrell Davis. 

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7 minutes ago, Nihilarian said:

Just think, Thurman had Barry Sanders on the bench behind him at OSU. Got injured as he tore his ACL... and when he returned...Sanders went back to riding the bench. 

 

Thomas fell to Buffalo in the second round, pick 40 because most teams thought he was overworked in College and all used up...also that knee injury. 7 RB's were taken ahead of Thurman in that 88 draft. 

 

The one thing Dan Marino never had at Miami was a Thurman Thomas at RB. John Elway didn't win a SB until Terrell Davis. 

 

If Singletary isn't the answer then the Bills need to find a "Thurman Thomas" to help Allen out. I know Allen's ability to run is a weapon but I hope Dorsey reduces those designed runs for Allen next year and relies on Singletary doing the running. Allen will get hit plenty with sacks, QB scrambles avoiding the rush as it is. 

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Thanks for posting.  I like that jumbo play that Thomas scored a few times on throughout the clip.  They line up heavy, motion 2 guys out to the left, quick snap, those two run clear out routes, and Thomas catches an easy swing underneath.

 

20 minutes ago, Nextmanup said:

Kenny Davis had more runs to the house than Thurman had (as I remember it) because he was that much faster.

 

Davis was faster.  Plus, Thomas had a patient running style - it would bug me when people would talk about the patience of Leveon Bell a few years back as if he was the only one in the history of the NFL to ever run that way - then he would decisively hit a hole, be able to make a guy miss in the hole.  Sometimes that would allow a defense to rally to prevent a breakaway run.  Thomas was the king of the 7-8 yard run (at least in my memory).  Then Davis would come in when a defense was tired and kind of used to Thurm's running style and he would get up field fast and hit some big runs.

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Im 33 now, and watched Thurman but not in the way that I could appreciate his true ability. Last season in the week leading up to the AFC Champ game I watched all 4 of our AFC champ games in the SB run on youtube, full games (sans commercials which is awesome). I couldnt believe how good Thurman was. After I while I was thinking why dont they just hand it to him every single play. He was an absolute beast every time he got the ball. My perception of him and the offense changed after that.

 

No wonder Kelly was efficient, they were terrified of Thurman and for good reason.

Edited by jletha
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As I recall, the early part of his career, he had "decent" speed.  Certainly not breakaway, scary speed, but adequate.  The latter part of his career he lost that but had a remarkable talent for wiggling for a few extra yards.

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4 minutes ago, I'm Spartacus said:

The icing on the cake was when Thurman just handed to ball to a ref after his TD.

No celebrations ever. True Pro.

 

All the Bills back then were cool like that.  Unless it was a huge important TD they just handed the ball over and went back to the huddle/sideline.  Unlike Manny OMFG I got a catch Sanders!!!!  That really irritates me to no end.  Git yo azz up and git back in the huddle!!!!  Dammit!

Edited by Kwai San
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31 minutes ago, Nihilarian said:

Just think, Thurman had Barry Sanders on the bench behind him at OSU. Got injured as he tore his ACL... and when he returned...Sanders went back to riding the bench. 

 

Thomas fell to Buffalo in the second round, pick 40 because most teams thought he was overworked in College and all used up...also that knee injury. 7 RB's were taken ahead of Thurman in that 88 draft. 

 

The one thing Dan Marino never had at Miami was a Thurman Thomas at RB. John Elway didn't win a SB until Terrell Davis. 

I remember that ESPN had a camera on him they cut to often during the first 39 picks as 7 running backs were selected before him, 5 in the first and 2 in the second round (in those days the draft was 2 days, I think is was rounds 1-3 on day 1 but it could have been more.) The dejection in Thurm's face was obvious. The Bills did not pass on him as they had no round 1 pick that year (the party line was the first round pick was Bennett, they just got him a year early.)

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11 minutes ago, I'm Spartacus said:

The icing on the cake was when Thurman just handed to ball to a ref after his TD.

No celebrations ever. True Pro.

Yep. He was down with that “act like you’ve been there before” philosophy. TT had so much respect for the game and the opponent. 

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1 hour ago, Nextmanup said:

My lasting memories are of him being caught from behind on long, break away runs that should have gone all the way but for his lack of speed.

 

Kenny Davis had more runs to the house than Thurman had (as I remember it) because he was that much faster.

 

I still say Thurman was as dangerous an overall offensive weapon as this league has ever seen.

 

 

Think of it this way... I recall CJ Spiller being caught from behind on 2 or 3 occasions and I believe he was the fastest running back we have ever had. 

22 minutes ago, Steve O said:

I remember that ESPN had a camera on him they cut to often during the first 39 picks as 7 running backs were selected before him, 5 in the first and 2 in the second round (in those days the draft was 2 days, I think is was rounds 1-3 on day 1 but it could have been more.) The dejection in Thurm's face was obvious. The Bills did not pass on him as they had no round 1 pick that year (the party line was the first round pick was Bennett, they just got him a year early.)

Coming off a serious knee injury, this was understandable.  ACL tears in the 80's were not like they are today. 

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