Oregon's Thomas Erupts w/ Game-Opening TD Return in Bowl Win
News:De'Anthony Thomas notched a 94-yard kickoff return for a touchdown on the first play of the 2013 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl and added four catches for 60 yards and a score Thursday as Oregon downed Kansas State 35-17 in Glendale, Arizona.
Analysis: Though averaging less yardage per carry (7.6 v. 10.8) and reception (9.9 v. 13.2) in his sophomore campaign, De'Anthony Thomas ended up with just 54 combined yards less (1146 v. 1200) in those two categories in 2012 than he did as a freshman in 2011, this while scoring an equivalent number of touchdowns (16). Look for him to play a larger role in Oregon's offense in 2013, especially given that Kenjon Barner now departs for the NFL.
News:De'Anthony Thomas carried 17 times for 122 yards and three touchdowns Saturday as Oregon defeated Oregon State 48-24 on the road in Corvallis.
Analysis:De'Anthony Thomas saw a great deal more playing time Saturday given an injury to teammate Kenjon Barner and, subsequently, finished with his best overall rushing numbers of the 2012 regular season.
Oregon's Thomas Accounts for Rushing TD in Loss to Stanford
News:De'Anthony Thomas took seven carries for 43 yards and a score and three receptions for three additional yards Saturday as Oregon fell to Stanford 17-14 in overtime at home in Eugene.
Analysis:De'Anthony Thomas' outright speed and athleticism as a ball carrier earned him his best rushing figures in three starts Saturday, but the sophomore was still held to season-low receiving numbers in the loss to the Cardinal.
Oregon's Thomas Breaks 100-Yard Receiving Mark vs. Cal
News:De'Anthony Thomas took five carries for 13 yards and eight receptions for 101 yards Saturday as Oregon downed California 59-17 on the road in Berkeley.
Analysis:De'Anthony Thomas has seen more work as a converted receiver over the last few weeks than at any other time in the season, combining for 13 catches for 160 yards and a touchdown in wins over USC and California. Watch to see if his role at tailback increases at Stanford if Kenjon Barner (hand) is unable to start next weekend, however.
News:De'Anthony Thomas carried just three times for nine yards, but pulled in five receptions for 59 yards and a touchdown Saturday as Oregon outgunned Southern California 62-51 on the road in Los Angeles.
Analysis: USC managed to hold De'Anthony Thomas to a season-low nine yards on the ground in Saturday's contest, but could not prevent him from impacting the game as a converted receiver, where Thomas scored the contest's first points on a 16 yard pass from Marcus Mariota. Regardless, Thomas' overall contribution as a member of a late-season fantasy roster remains minimal outside of Pac-12 only leagues given the workload teammate Kenjon Barner is seeing as the Ducks' starting tailback.
Oregon's Thomas Needs Only Five Carries to Finish w/ 97 Yards, TD
News:De'Anthony Thomas took five carries for 97 yards and a touchdown Saturday as Oregon swept past Colorado 70-14 at home in Eugene.
Analysis: Saturday's rushing numbers were De'Anthony Thomas' best since taking seven carries for 102 yards and two touchdowns against Fresno State on Sept. 8. Look for the sophomore to play an expanded role in next weekend's match up with USC.
Oregon's Thomas Averages Paltry 2.1 Yards Per Carry v. ASU
News:De'Anthony Thomas carried 12 times for just 25 total rushing yards Thursday night as Oregon downed Arizona State 43-21 on the road in Tempe.
Analysis:De'Anthony Thomas added three receptions for four yards to his resume Thursday night, but otherwise, was kept under wraps by Arizona State's defense. It was the sophomore's worst offensive showing to this point in the year.
Oregon's Thomas Combines for 87 Yards, TD v. Washington
News:De'Anthony Thomas carried 10 times for 75 yards and a touchdown and grabbed a single reception for 12 yards Saturday as Oregon routed Washington 52-21 in Eugene.
Analysis: Something odd is going on with De'Anthony Thomas this season and we can't quite figure out what it is. His talent level, if anything, seems to have increased - at least, that's what the first three games of the year suggested - but against Pac-12 opponents, he's gone relatively flat. We understand there is a bevy of talent in Oregon's backfield (don't forget Byron Marshall) and Marcus Mariota is being encouraged to get more comfortable throwing the ball under center in his first year with the program. Still, we'd expected to see more of Thomas - and see him doing more with the ball - than he has. Too talented a player to simply give up on in fantasy leagues (especially for keeper owners), Thomas nevertheless should be regarded with caution until such time that he begins to produce on a more consistent basis than he has over his last three games.
Oregon's Thomas Nets Only 54 Total Yards, TD v. WSU
News:De'Anthony Thomas carried six times for 26 yards and a score and took six receptions for 28 additional yards Saturday as Oregon defeated Washington State 51-26 on the road in Pullman.
Analysis: After three strong performances to kick off the 2012 season, De'Anthony Thomas has begun to find his overall production falling off, with the sophomore totaling just 76 yards rushing on 18 carries and 39 yards on eight receptions against Arizona and Washington State. Clearly, Pac-12 defenses are figuring out ways to counter Thomas' athelticism where non-conference foes were not.
News:De'Anthony Thomas carried 12 times for 48 yards and posted two receptions for an additional 11 yards Saturday as Oregon shot down Arizona 49-0 at home in Eugene.
Analysis:De'Anthony Thomas was unusually unproductive in Saturday's win over the Wildcats, but should bounce back next weekend as the Ducks travel to Pullman to take on the Washington State Cougars.
Oregon's Thomas - Six Touches, 135 Yards of Offense, Two TDs
News:De'Anthony Thomas saw the ball just six times Saturday as Oregon took down Tennessee Tech 63-14 at home, but still finished with 62 yards rushing, 73 yards receiving and two touchdowns.
Analysis: What De'Anthony Thomas is doing up in Eugene so far this season is simply astounding - with just 13 carries, he's already rushed for 228 yards and four touchdowns, while adding to his overall totals 11 receptions for 154 yards and three additional scores. He truly is one of those rare fantasy gems where, regardless of the overall number of touches he sees, Thomas is still going to produce, and do so in impressive fashion.
News:De'Anthony Thomas took just seven carries for 102 yards and two touchdowns Saturday as Oregon snuck past Fresno State 42-25 at home in Eugene.
Analysis:De'Anthony Thomas wasn't nearly as prolific as a receiver in Week Two as he was in Week One, but still managed to earn his first 100-yard rushing performance of 2012 in Saturday's win over the Bulldogs.
News:De'Anthony Thomas took three carries for 64 yards and a score and picked up four receptions for 55 yards and two additional touchdowns Saturday as Oregon downed Arkansas State 57-34 at home in its 2012 season opener.
Analysis: That both starter Kenjon Barner and De'Anthony Thomas, Barner's "back up," were done before the end of the first half just goes to prove how dangerous Chip Kelly's offense can be. Barner and Thomas both are fantasy must-starts.
News: Oregon freshman sensation De'Anthony Thomas suffered a hit to the head that caused a fumble in the first quarter and didn't play again in the win over UCLA.
Analysis: There was no immediate word on whether Thomas had suffered an injury, but he was shown on the sidelines without a helmet, smiling and laughing with teammates.
News: Oregon running back De'Anthony Thomas had an impact early in the USC game, but as the minutes passed, he was less and less a factor. Thomas had three catches for 49 yards and a score, but only gained three yards on three carries, with a fumble. However, his diversity was on display when he started the Duck rally late in the third quarter with a 96-yard kickoff return for a score.
Analysis: Thomas got off to a fast start, but the USC defense did a good job of shutting down a lot of what Oregon wanted to do offensively, including deploying Thomas as a weapon. His kickoff return, however, was as impressive as you could want. Just an explosive display of speed.
News: Arizona do-everything running back Ka'Deem Carey hurt Arizona State in a variety of ways Saturday -- he rushed for a team-leading 92 yards and caught four passes for 47 yards, including a touchdown in the win.
Analysis: Take a good look at Carey, who has the burst and speed to take on a De'Anthony Thomas role next year for Arizona. He's a threat to run it and catch it and turn those into big plays every time. Here's a guy who has really grown into a college football player in his freshman season.
News: One subplot of the Oregon-USC game this weekend is the De'Anthony Thomas factor. Thomas was an early commit to USC last year and, according to Trojan coach Lane Kiffin, helped recruit players for the Trojans after he committed.
Analysis: Kiffin said that Thomas' renege on his commitment was confusing and that he really hasn't gotten a satisfactory answer as to why the change of heart. As the season has unfolded, you can see why he'd want Thomas, whose speed and big play ability make him dangerous on every play.
News: If you had any doubt that Oregon receiver/running back De'Anthony Thomas was fast, his 41-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter Saturday should convince you. Thomas took a flare poss in the flat and was in the end zone before any other Cardinal defender was in the picture.
Analysis: Thomas had a key fumble when the Ducks were driving for a third score early, but redeemed himself with the scoring play later. He's a tremendous offensive talent and the Ducks do a good job of getting him isolated. When's he's able to get up to speed, he's a score waiting to happen.
News: Oregon's outstanding freshman running back/receiver De'Anthony Thomas was at it again Saturday, scoring on a 45-yard pass from Bryan Bennett, then adding a 93-yard kickoff return for a score to his resume.
Analysis: Thomas is more than speed, he's a gifted runner and has a sense for avoiding defenders. It's hard to know what to call this guy, but it's obvious the Ducks want him involved in the offense and to get the ball in his hands.
News: What position does Oregon's De'Anthony Thomas play? For the Ducks, it doesn't matter. Thomas was again a speedy, hard-to-deal with offensive force for Oregon, rushing seven times for 73 yards and two scores -- while also catching four passes for another 24 yards.
Analysis: Thomas' speed is very hard to deal with, and he seemed to find room and yardage every time he touched the ball Saturday. He doesn't get major touches, but what he does with 10 to 14 a game is pretty potent.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James did not practice again on Thursday and Duck quarterback Darron Thomas may have spilled the beans on James' status. "Same old thing, practicing, getting ready," Thomas said after practice on Wednesday. "Trying to push a little bit harder because we know we ain't gonna be with LaMike."
Analysis: James could certainly play without practicing and we won't get an official word on whether or not James will play from the coaching staff. But all signs point to James sitting this one out. Which means Kenjon Barner will likely carry the load at running back with De'Anthony Thomas (who will also play receiver) and Tra Carson seeing carries as well.
News: With LaMichael James out for Saturday's tilt with Arizona State, backup Kenjon Barner will get a healthy dose of touches. While De'Anthony Thomas and Tra Carson will also see more action, it will likely be Barner who is the meat and potatoes of the running game.
Analysis: Barner is only slightly below James in terms of explosiveness and big play capability. Barner has shown the ability to have huge days, too. He'll get a chance to touch the ball a decent amount, and if the Sun Devils don't respect him like they would James -- he could go off.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James met with the media on Tuesday and the question on everyone's mind was his status for Saturday's game against Arizona State. "I don't know yet," James said. "I'll have to wait and see. ...I don't want to miss to any game."
Analysis: The consensus opinion is that James will rest this week. Considering he still has swelling in the elbow and Kenjon Barner is more than capable carrying the load -- with Tra Carson and De'Anthony Thomas in relief -- it would seem wise for James to sit this one out.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James won't rule himself out of this weekend's game. James said his dislocated elbow is still sore and swollen, but said if the doctor's tell him it's fine to play, he'll likely play.
Analysis: James said his availability will be determined by the medical staff. It's hard to figure where this will fall as prudence would seem to dictate giving James a rest and letting Kenjon Barner, De'Anthony Thomas and Tra Carson the work. It's obvious that James wants to play, though, so we'll see how well his lobbying of the medical team works. At this point, he's likely not to play -- but he just might talk his way into it.
News: Oregon RB/WR De'Anthony Thomas took “a few more” reps at running back in practice on Monday, according to running backs coach Gary Campbell. Thomas also continued to work out at receiver.
Analysis: Thomas should see a few more carries this week, but look for him to continue to be used as a slot receiver. If LaMichael James (elbow) is unable to play, Kenjon Barner will get the start at running back. Having both Thomas and Barner (or James) on the field at the same time will most likely be the Ducks' game plan.
News: Oregon isn't tipping its hand in terms of who might replace all-American running back LaMichael James if he can't play this weekend. Kenjon Barner is the likely candidate to get most of the carries, but De'Anthony Thomas and Tra Carson are also likely to see action.
Analysis: Running backs coach Gary Campbell said that how each back does in this week's practice will determine who gets what kind of action. Look for Barner, but this could be the week that Thomas really gets a chance to touch the ball.
News: Oregon coach Chip Kelly offered no insight into the status of running back LaMichael James on Sunday, only that he is receiving treatment on his elbow.
Analysis: Finding out if James will play this week against Arizona State will be like pulling teeth. Even though he's comeback from this type of injury before (high school), not every situation is the same and it would still seem logical that he'll miss at least one game. If so, Kenjon Barner and De'Anthony Thomas will be highly involved in the run game.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James said he dislocated his elbow but was able to pop it back in on the field. "I panicked. It was out so I popped it back in," James said. "Even if I don’t play (against Arizona State next week), we have tremendous backs, I don’t think we’ll miss a beat."
Analysis: The big question now is whether James suffered any ligament or muscle damage when his elbow popped out and he popped it back in. If he's unable to play, look for Kenjon Barner to take over as the main ball carrier and De'Anthony Thomas to flex between slot and running back. Both would be fantasy options.
News: Oregon running back/receiver De'Anthony Thomas was impressive Thursday, scoring three touchdowns. Thomas rushed twice for 18 yards and a score, then caught six passes for 114 yards and two scores.
Analysis: Thomas proved to be a devastating receiver, sometimes running completely free in the California secondary. With LaMichael James possibly out a while, Thomas could see his role increase even more for the Ducks. He's an explosive player in an offense that loves explosive plays.
News: Oregon could be without Josh Huff (ankle/doubtful), receiver Justin Hoffman (concussion/doubtful) and running back Kenjon Barner (ankle/questionable) this Saturday against Montana State.
Analysis: Given the opponent, I doubt you will see any of the three; which increases the stock of all-purpose freshman De'Anthony Thomas. Thomas is looking like a good fantasy start this week.
News: Oregon freshman running back DeAnthony Thomas leads the Ducks in all-purpose yards with 326. Not bad for a team with LaMichael James and Darron Thomas on the field.
Analysis: With Missouri State up next, the likelihood of Thomas adding to his totals seems very good. Expect the Ducks to roll up some big numbers and Thomas to get his share of the booty.
News: Oregon receiver Cody Hoffman (head) and starting middle linebacker Michael Clay (leg) left Saturday's game against Nevada due to injury.
Analysis: With Josh Huff (foot), Kenjon Barner (foot) and Hoffman dinged up, look for the versatile DeAnthony Thomas to continue to platoon between receiver and running back in the coming weeks.
News: Oregon freshman running back DeAnthony Thomas was heavily involved in the offense from the outset Saturday. Thomas rushed eight times for 81 yards and caught two passes for 81 yards and two scores.
Analysis: Thomas took one of his catches 69 yards for the score and demonstrated repeatedly that his speed is something special. He's a playmaker and the Ducks are going to continue to get him 10 to 15 touches a game.
News: Outside of Lavasier Tuinei, Oregon coach Chip Kelly was not satisfied with his receiving corps. Kelly called out his young receivers Thursday, saying some of them needed to step up.
Analysis: Kelly said that when the opportunity to make a play arises, the youngsters need to make the play. With a Nevada team that has little resemblance to last year's Nevada team coming to town Saturday, the young receivers -- and Tuinei -- should get some nice opportunities.
News: Oregon backup running back Kenjon Barner suffered a sprained ankle in the loss to LSU and was in a protective boot after the game.
Analysis: Barner is an experienced and productive backup to LaMichael James and a quality kick returner -- his fumble and subsequent LSU score notwithstanding. If Barner can't go, DeAnthony Thomas would likely see a lot of playing time again.
News: One of the biggest surprises from the Oregon offense in the loss to LSU as the use of true freshman running back DeAnthony Thomas. The youngster was involved in the offense from the outset, catching six passes for 47 yards and rushing four times for 22 yards and a score.
Analysis: Even the game announcers were marveling at Thomas's involvement in the offense. Unfortunately, he showed his youth by coughing up the ball twice in rapid succession, both of which led to short-field touchdowns for LSU which blew the game open. Thomas has obviously found a niche in the offense for the coaches and will touch the ball -- much like Josh Huff did a year ago as a true frosh.