Thomas may be just what Dawgs are looking for

ATHENS – Even one of the fastest freshmen to arrive on campus admits it.

The speed of the game is a very different thing for young players in their first few months of practice. Good thing Carlton Thomas doesn't rely on his speed alone to get the job done.

"It's like ‘wow' you can't beat everyone with your speed," Thomas admitted. "You have to use your speed, but you have to get what you can get. Everyone is moving a lot faster out here. The biggest difference for me is that the defensive line moves very fast."

By the looks of it Thomas has been getting what he can get and then some. Already fighting for several spots on special teams groups, Thomas may avoid a redshirt season by working his way onto the field with a spot returning a kick or punt, or with his shifty ways out of the backfield.

"I've been out there on punt team and punt block. There's a lot of special teams out there right now for me to try to get on," he said.

Thomas said Sanders Comings, another freshman, was also working punt return along with Asher Allen, Ramarcus Brown, and Bryan Evans. At least one report indicated quarterback Logan Gray was working with that group, too.

"I think they expect me to do a lot of things – running the ball, running routes out of the backfield," Thomas said. "I think they want me to catch the ball out of the backfield or even just get the ball in my hands where I can create a play."

Thomas is a change up compared to the other running backs in camp. He's the shortest and shiftiest back. During practice he's been impressive coming out of the backfield as well as in one-on-one passing drills.

"I think the coaches think me coming out of the backfield is the top thing I can do," Thomas reiterated. "I can get to the outside and catch it out of the backfield. I think that could be my ticket to getting onto the field."

Thomas hopes to avoid a redshirt this season. In order to do so he will have to continue to work with his position coach.

"Coach Ball has been very helpful," Thomas said. "He motives me. He's been pushing and teaching. I have been learning a lot fast. I have learned a lot more that I thought I was going to."

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