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Anthony Thomas couldn't do much to increase his rushing numbers from his Offensive Rookie of the Year campaign in 2001, but he has room for growth in other areas.

Thomas struggled with blitz pickups last season. Head coach Dick Jauron admits that can often be the most difficult adjustment for college running backs when they come to the pros.

"It takes a running back to deal with protections and how to protect and to be a good pass protector I think that takes the most time. They can all run at this level."

Jauron has complimented Thomas on his improved blocking.

"I think he's improved a great deal," Jauron said.

Thomas caught 22 balls last season, but if he becomes an every down player that number should increase.

"He's got real good hands, but he always did," Jauron said.

Thomas struggled to get much on the ground against the Vikings carrying 19 times for 45 yards, but did have a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

When the running game wasn't successful Thomas stayed involved in the offense by catching four balls for 22 yards.

With the amount of success the Bears had passing against Minnesota Thomas should have more yards in the coming weeks. As opposing defenses begin to key on Marty Booker the line of scrimmage should loosen up because teams cannot afford to put eight men in the box when the Bears can pass deep.

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