When word emerged Tuesday that the Lions had acquired receiver Mike Thomas from the Jaguars for a fifth-round draft pick in 2014, it was assumed that Thomas would replace Nate Burleson, who had been lost eight days earlier with a broken leg. It could be that the potentially versatile Thomas will be replacing running back Jahvid Best as much as Thomas will be filling Burleson’s shoes.
As Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press explains it, the five-foot, eight-inch Thomas could play in the slot, from the backfield in a “Jahvid Best-type role,” and as a return specialist.
“I’m pretty sure I’ll be out there running around doing something.” Thomas told Birkett. “That’s all I can ask for is just to get out there and have an opportunity to contribute and we’ll see what happens.”
It makes sense if Thomas becomes the new Best. With Best still on the Physically Unable to Perform list and likely to not play at all this season, the Lions need to move on, at least temporarily.
Given that it’s been more than a year since Best has played since suffering his most recent concussion, it could be time for the Lions to move on from the 2010 first-round pick permanently.