Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Guard Donald Thomas leaving Patriots for Colts


The New England Patriots’ offensive line was beat up for much of the 2012 season. Now its top reserve is reaping the rewards for his effort.

Guard Donald Thomas appeared in all 16 games last season for the Pats’ front, and he reportedly agreed to a contract in principle with the Indianapolis Colts on Tuesday, per Jim Irsay. (photo: Jeffrey Beall, Flickr)

Thomas was on the field for nearly half of the team’s snaps as a backup and spent his time filling in for Dan Connolly and Logan Mankins, who missed a combined eight games in 2012.

The promotion is well-deserved for Thomas, but his work in protecting a high-profile quarterback won’t change much in Indy. The Colts’ offensive line allowed the second-most quarterback hits in the league on rookie Andrew Luck, and Luck got hit a staggering 25 percent of the time he dropped back to pass.

Thomas has proven to be strong in pass protection as well as in the run game, and he shows excellent versatility up front.

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