Connect with us

Football

BANNER LEARNED UNDER THE GREAT JOE THOMAS

Banner grateful for Thomas’ tutelage

By Patrick Lujan

With the NFL free agency period moving at rapid speed, the Cleveland Browns said farewell to left tackle Joe Thomas, one of the greatest to ever play the position.

For Guam’s Zach Banner, he was fortunate enough to learn from Thomas during his rookie season in Cleveland before the great one decided to call it quits.

“It takes a certain type of man to do what he did as a player, but it takes an even bigger person to take time each day and train his fellow colleagues like he did for me these past six months of knowing him,” Banner said on his Instagram about Thomas. “Thank you Joe for inspiring me to be great.”

During their trip to Guam in January, Banner and teammate Larry Ogunjobi (both rookies in 2017) frequently made reference to Thomas on his professionalism and overall approach to the game with attention to the most minute detail. Almost every technique the players taught during the coaches clinic on Guam made reference to Thomas both as an offensive lineman but also from Ogunjobi’s defensive lineman perspective.

“Joe sits so low in his stance that you can’t get leverage on him,” Ogunjobi explained.

“On pass protection, his arm is like a pendulum,” added Banner. “You can try and swipe it to take him off his leverage, but it swings freely and right back up without losing his ground. That’s one of the little things I was able to learn from him.”

Banner had five offensive line coaches in four season at USC. He once said he was probably at 30% of his potential coming out of college, but after a few months in the shadows of Thomas, he was at around 70% of his potential after his first pro season.

For Thomas, his decision to retire after 11 seasons and 10 Pro Bowl selections, it came down to his body not being able to perform at the top level.

“Playing in the NFL has taken a toll on my body and I can no longer physically compete at the level I need to,” Thomas said in a statement.

Thomas, 33, played every snap for the Browns since he was the third overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft until he suffered a triceps injury in October 2017. The streak was ended at 10,363 snaps when he was forced to leave in the third quarter of a loss to the Tennessee Titans. The injury forced him to miss the remainder of the season.

The Browns announced plans to enshrine Thomas’ streak of 10,363 snaps in the team’s Ring of Honor in 2018. He’s also won the Walter Payton Man of the Year honor in 2010, 2012 and 2016.

Dec 13, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns tackle Joe Thomas (73) leaves the field after the Cleveland Browns beat the San Francisco 49ers 24-10 at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

 

Ad

GPS Sports Calendar

September

October 2020

November
SU
MO
TU
WE
TH
FR
SA
27
28
29
30
1
2
3
Events for October

1st

No Events
Events for October

2nd

No Events
Events for October

3rd

No Events
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Events for October

4th

No Events
Events for October

5th

No Events
Events for October

6th

No Events
Events for October

7th

No Events
Events for October

8th

No Events
Events for October

9th

No Events
Events for October

10th

No Events
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
Events for October

11th

No Events
Events for October

12th

No Events
Events for October

13th

No Events
Events for October

14th

No Events
Events for October

15th

No Events
Events for October

16th

No Events
Events for October

17th

No Events
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
Events for October

18th

No Events
Events for October

19th

No Events
Events for October

20th

No Events
Events for October

21st

No Events
Events for October

22nd

No Events
Events for October

23rd

No Events
Events for October

24th

No Events
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
Events for October

25th

No Events
Events for October

26th

No Events
Events for October

27th

No Events
Events for October

28th

No Events
Events for October

29th

No Events
Events for October

30th

No Events
Events for October

31st

No Events
1
2
3
4
5
6
7

Foody’s 5 Fun Facts

NFL Fan Edition: Sherwin Paet

Polls

Who had the most impressive first win in the UFC?

View Results

DID U KNOW?

Frank ‘The Crank’ Camacho was a competitive youth golfer in Saipan with dreams of making it to the PGA.

COMING SOON …

ALL SPORTING EVENTS HALTED DUE TO THE CORONAVIRUS ISSUE

QUICK HITS

Jamal Agnew changes positions this year with the Detroit Lions from cornernack to receiver.
The 2019 All-Pro return man will retain his special teams duties for the Lions.
Agnew is half CHamoru with his mother hailing from Saipan. #bibamarianas 📷 (AP/Carlos Osorio)

More in Football