A year ago we would have all laughed at the notion of a journeyman quarterback switching positions and becoming fantasy relevant. Terrelle Pryor not only became fantasy relevant, but exceeded our expectations with eclipsing over 1000 yds on the season. Talks of the Browns placing the franchise tag on Pryor will put him in the market of $16 million for the 2017 season. No one is laughing anymore. (Take that Brian Hartline). Just as the NFL will ‘copycat’ successful trends, we as fantasy players need to open our minds to the possibility of another freak athlete switching positions in 2017.
Logan Thomas and Terrelle Pryor have a lot of interesting parallels. Terrelle Pryor wasted 4 seasons at the quarterback position, where as Logan Thomas wasted 3. Both athletes were very successful high school basketball players. A tidbit more relevant to the potential success of Logan Thomas since many more tight ends have made the switch from balling on the court to balling on the field, i.e. Antonio Gates, Tony Gonzalez, Jimmy Graham, Julius Thomas. Pryor and Thomas also boast upper percentile athleticism for their respective positions. Pryor blazed an absurd 4.41 (90th-percentile) 40-yard dash at 6-4, 233-pounds, which equates to a 128.3 (99th-percentile) Height-adjusted Speed Score (HaSS). Thomas’ 4.61 (86th-percentile) 40-yard dash time and 112.1 (88th-percentile) HaSS were nearly as impressive. What Thomas lacks in speed with comparison to Pryor, he more than makes up in other metrics. Most notably a 10.31 (93rd-percentile) Catch Radius.
Without the recent success of Terrelle Pryor, who is to say the position change of Logan Thomas would even be a thing? Teams have been telling Logan Thomas since high school that he is best suited to play tight end. Rivals dot com ranked him the number one tight end prospect in the nation. In the 2014 draft many teams sniffed his interest to possibly switch positions. Scouts projected he would have the better career as a tight end. Thomas said he would be open to the idea, but preferred to play under center. NFL teams required little convincing that Thomas is a quality tight end prospect. The Bills gave him a $75,000 signing bonus the day after he was put on Lion’s practice squad. That is not something that is common late in the season. It was Thomas who needed to be convinced that he would have more success in the NFL as a tight end than at quarterback. When describing Logan Thomas, the Buffalo Bills tight end coach Tony Sporano Jr uses the words intelligent, motivated, and hungry. An appetite sparked by the recent success of Terrelle Pryor.
The odds are stacked against Logan Thomas switching positions at this stage of his career. Let’s not fool ourselves into thinking Logan Thomas can just be plugged in as a tight end and excel at every nuance of the position. Thomas also is firmly behind Charles Clay on the depth chart. Injuries may have to pave the way for Logan Thomas to get a real chance, however that is not that much of a long shot considering the fragility of the position. Terrelle Pryor needed one full season after the position switch to break out at age 27. It is possible that Logan Thomas may also need the 2017 season to gain his bearings for a 2018 breakout at age 26. However, I guarantee that right now he could catch a touchdown with a fade or boxing out the defender. After all, the one target that he had as a tight end with Virginia Tech came from none other than Tyrod Taylor for a touchdown. I recommend acquiring Logan Thomas in deeper dynasty formats and taking a wait-and-see approach to redraft.