Joe Thomas on playing through injuries: You suck it up, you’re a lineman

Getty Images

Browns tackle Joe Thomas hurt his knee on Monday when he was rolled up from behind during a play and missed practice on Tuesday, although the two things weren’t totally related.

Thomas was scheduled for a rest day anyway and he said Tuesday that he would have been able to go through the practice session without a problem. Thomas’s resiliency comes as no surprise since he’s never missed a regular season snap since coming to the Browns and his ability to do that is even more impressive after he revealed that he’s played through three torn MCLs and two high ankle sprains since starting his career.

“You just suck it up. You’re a lineman,” Thomas said, via the Akron Beacon-Journal. “The great thing about being a lineman is you need to be quick and fast, but you don’t need to be that quick and fast. So if you lose a little bit because you’re hurt, it doesn’t hurt you that bad. You can make it up with technique.”

Thomas said the only non-preseason game action he can remember missing because of injury came at Wisconsin when he tore his ACL during the third quarter of a bowl game in his junior year. Thomas missed the fourth quarter of that game, which really makes you question his commitment to the program.

We kid, of course. Thomas’s ironman streak boggles the mind given the position he plays and how well he’s played it despite the many aches and pains that crop up over the course of an NFL season. The Browns haven’t been able to point to many positives over the last eight years, but putting their faith in Thomas was one decision the franchise got right.