OK Ladies, I usually don’t do a mid week post, but I just got inspired.
Rumor has it, De’Anthony Thomas might switch from his high-powered, running back/receiver post to the Defense for this week’s match up against Stanford. And, it totally makes sense.
For those of you who just tuned in, De’Anthony Thomas is one of the best players in college football. He was the #1 recruit out of High School, where he played as a running back, receiver and *drumroll* DEFENSIVE back. I know we all love watching DAT blaze down the field, out-running EVERYONE, but for this game, putting De’Anthony in at DB would be a genius move, albeit a desperate one.
I’ve talked a lot this year about Oregon’s Secondary-basically the guys that defend the receivers. This has been a weakness for the Ducks in recent years- this year being no exception. There has been some progress, but with two of the stars (John Boyett and now Avery Patterson) out with season-ending injuries, the Ducks are in a desperate spot. Enter De’Anthony Thomas.
I may be jumping ahead, because it’s sheer rumor at this point (he was seen practicing with the defense this week, but UO will not confirm this for obvious reasons), but I have to say the possibility has made me even more excited for this week’s game. Here’s why….
1. De’Anthony has solid experience playing at DB. It’s rumored that USC had intended to have him play at DB, but he preferred playing offense, so he opted to commit to Oregon (again, he has never confirmed this, but I think it’s safe to say he’s shown promise on defense in the past).
2. De’Anthony is one of the fastest players in college football-hence the nickname Black Momba (Yes that is the spelling he uses). Who better to defend those receivers. If the Ducks can figure out where the Standford receivers will run, De’Anthony should have no problem keeping up with them and breaking up the pass. This could be huge.
3. De’Anthony can catch. I’ve been impressed with his ability to play at Receiver, in addition to the all the other positions he plays (Kick Off Returner, Running Back). This could spell i-n-t-e-r-c-e-p-t-i-o-n-s!
OK, now that my “De’Anthony on defense” cheerleading session is over, here’s the down side of DAT playing on Defense: Injury.
We all know how important De’Anthony is to the Ducks’ high-scoring offense and losing him to injury could be a devastating loss. Right now, Kenjon Barner can easily carry the majority of the running back load, but what if he went down- Heaven forbid. I’m sure this is what the coaches have been contemplating all week- it’s a catch 22. Gamble on a new defensive playmaker and risk injury, or hope for the best with the DB’s the Ducks have?
I say throw him in. I’ve been terrified all year as DAT’s run full speed toward a defensive stampede on kick offs. He’s smaller than most of the players, and I cringe every time he catches that ball- determined to “run in back”. If he’s survived that, he’s earned his stripes.
Chip, if you can hear me and the rumors are true…you have my blessing.