Sometimes, a fresh start is what NFL players need. According to CBS Sports, the San Francisco 49ers are trading Brandon Thomas to the Detroit Lions. The former third round draft pick never played in a game for the Niners, but he has enough talent that the Lions could find a place for him.
Simply put, the San Francisco 49ers needed another wide receiver. Anquan Boldin left the team in free agency and signed with the Detroit Lions, where he is expected to become the slot wide receiver for Matthew Stafford. Bruce Ellington suffered some sort of hamstring injury on Friday.
When the opportunity arose for the San Francisco 49ers to acquire Jeremy Kerley, who spent five seasons with the New York Jets, management was quick to jump on the offer. At the very least, they needed another body that could line up opposite Torrey Smith, the only credible wide receiver on the Niners roster.
Report: Lions acquire OL Thomas for WR Kerley: The Detroit Lions have made a trade, sending wide receiver Jer... https://t.co/foSMgBQTjc— The Detroit News (@Newslions) August 28, 2016
Brandon Thomas was someone that the San Francisco 49ers really liked. The only reason why he dropped to the third round of the NFL Draft was because of injuries. Management took a chance on him because they felt that he could be built back up and become a dominant blocker again.
Unfortunately for Brandon Thomas, the offensive guard positions became extremely deep over the summer. With so many other options available for the San Francisco 49ers, Thomas became someone that was deemed as expendable in the eyes of general manager Trent Baalke and head coach Chip Kelly.
Former starting right tackle Anthony Davis came back after a year-long retirement and is now doing well as the starting right guard, as reported by Niners Nation. Not only does Davis sound motivated again, he seems to have embraced the position change. Davis told the media that he was an athlete, so he wanted the challenge of playing guard.
A big reason why Anthony Davis has embraced the right guard position is because former seventh round draft pick Trent Brown has taken over the right tackle position. With Davis being a superior player with a good amount of experience, Brandon Thomas had an uphill battle to break into the starting lineup.
Brandon Thomas would have had trouble with the left guard position as well. The San Francisco 49ers spent a first round draft pick on Joshua Garnett, and he figures to factor into their future. Plus, the Niners signed Zane Beadles in free agency.
The San Francisco 49ers are unexpectedly deep on the offensive line again. One of the cuts that they made this week was Erik Pears, who happened to start at right tackle for them last season. The move was designed so that Pears can try to find another NFL team before the regular season starts.
For Brandon Thomas, he now has at least a chance to compete for a starting job with the Detroit Lions. Larry Warford and Laken Tomlinson are currently penciled in as the starters at left guard and right guard. Thomas will have to chance to unseat one of them during the final preseason game.
Brandon Thomas played left tackle in college. While many in the NFL believe that he is more suited to being a guard, the versatility should help him get a chance somewhere, even if it is not with the Detroit Lions. The talent is there. People just need to believe that he has fully recovered from his ACL injury.
There are so many variables involved with being a star in the NFL. Sometimes, you have to be in the right place at the right time. Brandon Thomas is hoping that is the case with the Detroit Lions.
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