The New York Giants were very active at the start of NFL free agency again this offseason. On Wednesday, the G-Men announced that they have signed five players in free agency to help the Giants return to the playoffs in 2015 season. Of those signings, was former Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker J.T Thomas.
The four year pro out of West Virginia University is coming off a career season with the Jaguars. In 2014, Thomas racked a career high 84 tackles and lead the Jaguars in interceptions as well.
“I am excited to be here, really excited to be here,” the former mountaineer said about becoming a Giant. “I just want to thank the Mara and Tisch families for having me. I am excited.”
Thomas is primarily a middle linebacker by trade, but has the versatility to play multiple positions on defense and special teams for the Giants.
“Speed. I am an aggressive player,” Thomas said about what can bring to the Giants on the field defensively and on special teams. “ Bang, bang plays, turnovers – that is my thing. I am good at getting the ball back [by] creating turnovers. I think that is what will help us win ball games and that is my goal.
Drafted in the 6th by the Chicago Bears back in the 2011 NFL Draft, Thomas was consider at a most a special teams player until he was given the chance to start in Jacksonville at middle linebacker when starter Paul Posluszny went down with an injury.
In his NFL career, Thomas has only started 12 games and besides the 2014 season, did have more than 30 tackles in a season. He also has does not have a sack yet in his NFL career as well.
“ I have had a really interesting journey,” Thomas said. “I was blessed with the opportunity to be able to take the field, and I just play fast. I let it rip and we had a great year, a great second half. And it felt really good to play some nice quality defensive reps and to gain the game experience and get better. It was a really cool experience.”
Besides Thomas, the Giants also signed former New England Patriot Jonathan Casillas and resigned Mark Herzlich to add depth at the linebacker position. Those three paired with Jameel McClain, Devon Kennard and Jon Beason, make up for a solid linebacker core for the Giants for the 2015 season.
The Giants in 2014 were ranked 30th in rush defense and ranked 29th overall in total defense.