Can Rap star Major Nine and Number 92 of the Cleveland Browns coexist and achieve brilliant success?
Major Nine is a Miami area rap star and producer, who achieved notoriety in the past few years, so much so that the Washington Post referred to him as “superhuman”. He has worked with several rap artists including Rick Ross, Raphael Saadiq, and has produced his own music.
Major Nine is undeniably a talent, so much so that his new single, “What’s Love” was released on Valentine’s Day 2019, and has already achieved nearly 200,000 views on youtube.
Chad Thomas, number 92 of the Cleveland Browns, is a 6-foot-5, 285-pound defensive end drafted in the third round last year after a successful career for the Miami Hurricanes. In his senior year, he was credited with an impressive 12.5 tackles for a loss, and added 4.5 sacks.
He would seem to be the run stopping defensive end to complement Myles Garrett, the sack machine on the right side. Number 92 got off to a slow start with the Browns, however, partly due to a hernia and groin injury early in the year last year. He has yet to make an impression, taking only 22 snaps on defense in 2018.
Major Nine, the rap artist and producer and Number 92 are the same person, a.k.a., Chad Thomas. As you might guess, 9 was his number in college, although such low numbers are normally not given to defensive linemen in the NFL. Thomas is a major enigma on the Browns roster. Can a rap star make it in the NFL?
So how good is Major Nine? And what about the use of shock language? His raps contain liberal use of the f-word and the b-word, and it goes down from there. Is he going to cause Number 92 to run afoul of the NFL personal conduct policy?
To find out, DPD consulted Eric Jordan on these sometimes sensitive subjects. Like Major Nine, Jordan is a two-way threat. He is known to many Browns fans as the co-host of internet Browns-centric talk show “Browns in Our Blood,” with Anthony Sellers. But Jordan is also well known in the Morgantown, WV area as DJ Monstalung, a producer for many hip-hop and rap artists on the Soundvizion label, including 6’6 240 and A Breezy. If there is one person on earth with an informed opinion about both sides, it would be Jordan.
"“Major Nine is is a very talented rapper, who would be considered a hip hop artist with true depth, content and storytelling ability.”"
On the subject of shock language, Jordan was optimistic that this would ultimately pass muster with the NFL.
"“He does use some harsh language that could be frowned upon by the NFL fanbase, but they are getting more used to it. Several NBA players are rappers and use language like this, and they are never questioned with it. The NFL base is different, but they seem to be coming around. Even though his lyrics are harsh, his message is pretty good. I don’t see this hurting his stock, but could be something local press could run with as a story, but once they dive deeper into the song and its message, they would get past the language. “"
Still, 2018 should have been a great opportunity for a young defensive end, as Emmanuel Ogbah, Chris Smith and Anthony Zettel did not form a particularly strong rotation around superstar Myles Garrett. There should have been an opportunity for a talented defensive end to get some game snaps, even if he wasn’t ready to play every down and every situation. It would have made sense to use Thomas in run stopping situations, complementing the starter Ogbah, who is better known for his ability to deflect passes while rushing the quarterback. Ogbah was credited with a modest three sacks, but also totaled eight passes defended.
WIth the addition of Oliver Vernon (second highest salary on the team) and Sheldon Richardson (fourth highest), the defensive line has already invested in two new starters, meaning that there is going to be a scramble for the remaining roster spots.
Being a third round pick last year is not a guarantee to make the team this year. Assuming he is healthy, he is overdue to produce. Otherwise, instead of setting records in the NFL, he might be making records in the music industry on a full time basis, despite his obvious football talent.