Position: Running Back
Size: 6’0″ – 230 pounds
What I like: Thomas has a nice combination of size and speed (4.6 in the 40-yard dash). Plus, he’s plenty familiar with the Bengals, having worked with their coaches at the Senior Bowl. He’s supposedly good at gaining yards after contact, which is a strong suit of Cedric Benson as well. Furthermore, he should be available somewhere near the third round, saving Cincinnati some of its higher picks.
What I don’t like: Thomas is still unpolished and may need some time to adjust to the NFL. Plus, a lot of the professional scouts have him ranked around No. 5 at running back, suggesting there are some legitimate prospects who might be better. And I’m not sure how he’d fit in the West Coast offense. Cincinnati will need a running back who can run routes and catch passes.
Final thoughts: Running backs are a bit of a crapshoot in the NFL, so I’d prefer the Bengals get one more toward the middle of the draft than the top. If Thomas is there somewhere around the third round or afterward, I’ll take him.