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Anthony Thomas (American football)

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Anthony Thomas warms up before a game in 2006.
No. 35, 28, 32
Position: Running back
Personal information
Date of birth: (1977-11-07) November 7, 1977 (age 38)
Place of birth: Winnfield, Louisiana
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Career information
College: Michigan
NFL draft: 2001 / Round: 2 / Pick: 38
Career history
As player:
As coach:
  • West Virginia Wesleyan (2011)
    (Running backs coach)
  • West Virginia Wesleyan (2012–present)
    (Special teams coordinator)
  • Career highlights and awards
    Career Template:If empty statistics
    Rushing yards: 3,891
    Rushing average: 3.7
    Rushing TDs: 23
    Stats at

    Anthony Thomas (born November 7, 1977) is a former American football running back who played for seven seasons in the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Michigan, where he gained the nickname "A-Train" due to his power-running style. Anthony Thomas was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the second round of the 2001 NFL Draft. As a rookie with the Bears in 2001, Thomas rushed for over 1,100 yards and seven touchdowns to earn the AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Award. He played for the Bears from 2001 to 2004, Dallas Cowboys in 2005, New Orleans Saints in 2005, and Buffalo Bills from 2006 to 2007.

    High school career

    At Winnfield Senior High School, Thomas starred on the basketball, track, and football teams. He set a state record with 106 career touchdowns while playing both running back and placekicker. He was named a first-team All-American and rated as the second-best running back in the country by the Prep Football Report.

    College career

    Before entering the professional ranks, Thomas played college football at University of Michigan. As a freshman in 1997, he contributed to the Wolverines' 12-0 national championship season. In his stellar collegiate career (1997–2000), Thomas set school records for rushing yards (4,472) and touchdowns (56). His record for rushing yards was broken later by both Mike Hart and Denard Robinson, as shown in the following chart:

    Rank Name Attempts Net Yds Yds/Att Touchdowns Long Start End
    1 Mike Hart 1015 5040 5.0 41 64 2004 2007
    2 Denard Robinson 723 4495 6.2 42 87 2009 2012
    3 Anthony Thomas 924 4472 4.8 55 80 1997 2000
    4 Jamie Morris 806 4392 5.5 25 68 1984 1987
    5 Tyrone Wheatley 688 4178 6.1 47 88 1991 1994

    Thomas also ranks second in school history in rushing yards in a single season with 1,733 yards in 2000:

    Rank Name Attempts Net Yds Yds/Att Year
    1 Tim Biakabutuka 303 1818 6.0 1995
    2 Anthony Thomas 319 1733 5.4 2000
    3 Jamie Morris 282 1703 6.0 1987
    4 Denard Robinson 256 1702 6.6 2010
    5 Chris Perry 338 1674 5.0 2003

    Awards And Honors

    Conference Honors

    Team Honors

    Professional career

    Thomas was drafted in the second round (38th overall) of the 2001 NFL Draft by the Chicago Bears, and he reached 1,183 rushing yards and the NFL Rookie of the Year Award. With the emergence of Thomas Jones in Chicago, he signed with the Dallas Cowboys in 2005 as the backup running back to Julius Jones. Thomas' ineffectiveness in limited duty, his inability to play special teams, and the emergence of Marion Barber III as the primary backup led Dallas to release him in November 2005. He was quickly signed by New Orleans after they lost Deuce McAllister with a season ending knee injury,[2] and split rushing duties with Aaron Stecker. On April 28, 2006, Anthony Thomas signed with the Buffalo Bills, where he spent two seasons.

    Coaching career

    Thomas is currently the special teams coordinator at West Virginia Wesleyan College.[3]

    See also


    1. 1.0 1.1 "Michigan Football Statistic Archive Query Page". Regents of the University of Michigan. 2003. Archived from the original on 13 December 2007. Retrieved 2007-12-06. 
    2. Anthony Thomas gets second chance with the Saints ([dead link]
    3. "Anthony Thomas". Retrieved 2012-07-18.