Cleveland Browns offensive tackle Joe Thomas is once again primed for a high finish in the annual ranking of the NFL’s Top 100 players.
The annual countdown of the NFL’s best players continued last night, reaching Matt Stafford at No. 31 overall.
The Cleveland Browns remain without a representative on the list up to this point, but fans should not worry. Joe Thomas will be announced soon.
Thomas is a mainstay on the list, finishing No. 23 overall a year ago and has never been left off the list since it began in 2011.
Browns fans may take him for granted after all the years of solid play at the left tackle position, but opposing defenders know just how great Thomas is, evident by his high finish every year in these rankings.
It would be nice to have the franchise’s best player be a star quarterback or any other skill position, but having Thomas at left tackle for the past decade may be the only reason why the Browns have had any success on offense since he was drafted in 2007.
With how bad the team has played in that stretch, it may have been much worse if players were shuffled in and out of that position. Luckily, a rare great draft pick was made by the organization that solidified the left tackle position.
It is nice to see Thomas continually recognized, but it would be even better if other players on the team were able to crack this list. Gary Barnidge and Joe Haden have joined Thomas in the past, but one is now gone and the other is looking for a return to his old ways.
Players don’t even necessarily have to make this list, but even being up for consideration would be a nice change from what fans have seen as the on-field product for so long. The current front office has brought in a great deal of new faces to turnaround the team, so it remains to be seen if there are any future stars among the bunch, or if the cycle is set to continue.
For now, fans can appreciate all the hard work Thomas has put in during his time with the Browns. His loyalty to the city and the organization is something fans can rally behind, and hopefully he will get to be on a playoff team in Cleveland before his career comes to an end.