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  1. #1
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    Great Article on DT's Injuries and Future

    http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap300...festyle-change

    Demaryius Thomas reinvigorated by radical lifestyle change

    By James Palmer
    Reporter
    Published: Aug. 8, 2018 at 04:51 p.m. Updated: Aug. 8, 2018 at 06:00 p.m.

    ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Early after the Broncos' season ended without a trip to the playoffs for a second consecutive year, wide receiver Demaryius Thomas found himself in his home, doing what he does quite often: sitting in his family room in silence, with the TV off, reading. On any given day, Thomas could be reading about any given topic, but on that day, Thomas was perusing something that, he now believes, changed his life, his body and, in turn, his career.

    More on that in a bit, though. First, let's backtrack to how Thomas reached the point, following the first season in which he'd failed to top 1,000 receiving yards since the 2011 campaign, of seriously contemplating the day he'd retire.


    Thomas has a belief that if you can play on Sunday, you don't talk about your injuries. While fans and analysts have criticized his production, inability to create separation and streaky play in recent years, Thomas, without saying a word, has limped onto the field for all 16 games in each of the last six seasons. He says the labrum in his hip is partially torn, and that his hip has bothered him for years, going beyond an issue that cropped up at the beginning of the 2016 season. The past couple of seasons have been the most painful.

    "For, like, the past two years, for real, it's been my neck and my hip," Thomas told me last week as the two of us stood alone in an end zone on the Broncos' practice field. "It was just times I couldn't compete my best. And you know, sometimes, I remember one game we were playing the Patriots, and the corner (Logan Ryan) called it out. He said, 'You're not yourself.' And I was like, 'Man, I'm doing whatever I can to try to get attention.' "

    His hip was so bad at times that Thomas literally couldn't do the one simple task that's required to play his position.

    "Like, for real, with all the problems with my hip, especially with my hip, it was like, sometimes I couldn't even stop," Thomas told me.

    But Thomas felt that if he could line up every week and create the perception that nothing was physically wrong with him, the attention he drew from opposing defenders would allow fellow receiver Emmanuel Sanders or the running back coming out of the backfield a chance to find themselves with a favorable matchup.

    "He played through a lot of injuries last year," second-year head coach Vance Joseph told me. "He's had some wear and tear."


    Thomas, who will turn 31 on Christmas, still works out from time to time with Peyton Manning, his former quarterback, but now their conversations are more about kids than route trees. He's in his ninth NFL season and is the only offensive starter remaining on the 2018 Broncos who was teammates in Denver with a current baseball player named Tim Tebow.

    Thomas is on the back nine of his career -- but last season, he thought he was on the 18th green. Because of the intense pain he had played through in 2016 and '17, Thomas honestly believed that either this upcoming campaign or the 2019 season (the last of his current contract) would mark the end of his playing days in the NFL.

    He has said previously, including last offseason, that his hips were better. But now, after an offseason unlike any other in the past, Thomas has a new mindset and a body that feels exponentially improved.

    "Now I'm thinking, 15 or 16 (years)," Thomas said with a smile, when discussing how long he thinks he'll play. "Like, for real, I'm going to be like Larry Fitzgerald. Maybe even more. It just depends, you know? I mean, s---, tomorrow I could finish my career off of one crazy injury. But yeah, my mindset has changed."

    What, precisely, sparked that change stems back to that day on the couch after last season's 5-11 finish. Thomas, who tries to keep up with health and fitness magazines, was reading something -- he doesn't remember exactly what -- about the relationship between inflammation and diet that opened his eyes to the notion of having his blood tested. While training in Arizona later in the offseason with Ian Danney at Performance Enhancement Professionals (PEP) (which is described on its website as a "state of the art wholly integrated sports performance center for the elite athlete"), Thomas was put in contact with doctors who would conduct the tests and evaluate the results.

    A week later, he had what looked like a sheet of rules to follow from there on out.

    You're lacking in vitamin D.

    You have had too much mercury.

    Don't eat these breads.

    No dairy.

    No shellfish.

    No pork.

    No alcohol.

    It clearly broke down everything his body was sensitive to, what inflamed his body and his hip. It also listed supplements that were lacking or needed. Changing what he drank was tough, but cutting out dairy was tougher.

    For two weeks, under the guidance of Danney, Thomas continued to work out at PEP and consume his new diet and supplements at the gym. In 14 days, the 6-foot-3 Thomas went from 228 to 212 pounds. The idea of dropping below his playing weight was hard to swallow, but he felt great, physically. Putting the weight back on wasn't an issue, either, once they figured out a new workout program.

    The results of the new diet and an outside-of-the-box workout -- much of his offseason training didn't involve weights -- are showcased each day of training camp. Thomas is lean, strong and motivated. He continues to follow the strict diet, using an in-home personal chef, and is having one of his best camps in years, according to multiple people around the Broncos.

    Another motivating factor is the Broncos' selection in the 2018 NFL Draft of receivers Courtland Sutton (a second-round pick) and DaeSean Hamilton (a fourth-rounder). When you watch the two rookies in practice, you get the impression the Broncos drafted younger clones of their two-headed monster the last five years in Thomas and Sanders (who turned 31 in March). Denver believes both rookies will make an immediate impact, and Thomas agrees. He's extremely complimentary of both. But at times, he questions where his relationship with the Broncos faithful stands.

    "It be hurting me sometimes man," Thomas said of the fans' opinion of him over the years. "I love my young guys ... but they putting my young guys over me already, and they ain't even played a down. I be like, alright, cool. It's whatever. Everybody got their own opinion. I let it slide. I used to not let it slide. It used to, like, bother my game. So now it's like, it is what it is. It's like, (I have) no cares about it. I'm going to go out every week, I'm going to go out every day and I'm going to work my ass off every day to be the best I'm going to be. If my best ain't good enough for here, then you never know."


    Cornerback Chris Harris, a teammate of Thomas' since 2011, says Thomas has a chance to be called the greatest receiver in Broncos history and will certainly be in the Broncos' Ring of Fame. Thomas wants to remain a Bronco for life, but the reality for a receiver in his 30s making his type of money is, this could be his final season in Denver, and he knows it. If this is indeed it, No. 88 doesn't know exactly what his legacy will be, but he has thought about it.

    "I do be thinking that," Thomas said in his soft Southern accent. "And sometimes, I'll let the little stuff get in my head. Because there's some fans here that don't like me. I don't know why. I really don't know why. Maybe it's because I don't cheer, I've had my drops here and there, but I don't know why. But I'm going to keep playing for the organization, my teammates and myself. All the other people, I don't got to worry about right now. I do it for the fans for sure; they ain't got to do what we do from 6 to 8 o'clock. They ain't got to go out there on the field and do what we do. I love the city, and I've been loving them since I got here. Since Day 1. Since me and Tebow. Since those days."

    If he's nearing the end in Denver, it looks as though Thomas is set up for a swan song. This offseason, the Broncos aggressively pursued Case Keenum, freeing Thomas from receiver purgatory and giving him a talented quarterback for the first time since he was racking up monster seasons with Manning. Combine that with his offseason transformation and the addition of young weapons to the offense, and Thomas could see this season be exactly what he envisioned it to be: pain-free, productive -- and without too much free time for reading in January.

    Follow James Palmer on Twitter @JamesPalmerTV.


    Great read, and great news.

  2. #2
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    Very interesting article. While reading it I could not help feeling like this was a weak justification as to why DT didn't play like a highly paid $1 receiver the last couple years. Hopefully he does this year; but I'm not going to hold my breath we don't read about more excuses from him next year. Hid diet didn't make him among the drop leaders two years in a row.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rancid View Post
    Very interesting article. While reading it I could not help feeling like this was a weak justification as to why DT didn't play like a highly paid $1 receiver the last couple years. Hopefully he does this year; but I'm not going to hold my breath we don't read about more excuses from him next year. Hid diet didn't make him among the drop leaders two years in a row.
    $1 receivers are barely paid.

    Not sure what the drop problems were from but it could be pain from the torn hip labrum.
    I sprained my hip labrum triple jumping in college and it made everything more difficult. His injury could have caused pain that resulted in a lack of concentration.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Houshmazode View Post
    $1 receivers are barely paid.

    Not sure what the drop problems were from but it could be pain from the torn hip labrum.
    I sprained my hip labrum triple jumping in college and it made everything more difficult. His injury could have caused pain that resulted in a lack of concentration.
    Yea, my spelling was atrocious.
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  5. #5
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    Iím not sure when he initially hurt his hip but there was a noticeable drop off in his play when he hurt his hip in cincy during our super bowl run. He hasnít moved the same since especially coming out of his breaks

  6. #6
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    I am happy Thomas' body is responding well to his new diet and that he's optimistic about his future career. However, he's getting paid handsomely to catch the ball; it's a shame no one asked him about his drops. The Broncos and its fans deserve first downs and touchdowns, not excuses. Someone on the team dropped the ball. This new year will be very telling.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mozzerpete View Post
    I am happy Thomas' body is responding well to his new diet and that he's optimistic about his future career. However, he's getting paid handsomely to catch the ball; it's a shame no one asked him about his drops. The Broncos and its fans deserve first downs and touchdowns, not excuses. Someone on the team dropped the ball. This new year will be very telling.
    People need to relax on the criticism of DT. The man is the 2nd leading WR in Broncos history and is 1 of 4 players all time with four consecutive seasons of 1,300 yards and 10+ TDs---yet there is a section of Broncos fans that treat and talk about the guy like he took their girlfriend. Its really strange. I dont think I have ever seen a franchise throw jabs at one of their Pro Bowl level players who never misses games, plays through injuries, is a golden child off the field and frankly is a extremely easy to root for personality quite like Broncos fans do with Demaryius Thomas.

    If people are going to constantly jump on DT for being paid a lot of money but having up and down production sometimes then why not point that same hatred at Von Miller who is the highest paid defensive player in the NFL and finished last season 18th in sacks.

    As far as his drops, he had the same amount last year as Keenan Allen, Dez Bryant, Julio Jones, Amare Cooper and Jimmy Graham. Drops happen when your as as heavily targeted as some of these #1 WRs are especially when you have a rotating door of QBs. 2 years ago he was targeted 144 times and dropped 7 balls for a drop rate of only 4.9%. Lower drop rate than Travis Kelce and Michael Crabtree. Cut the guy some slack, he does drop 5-8 passes a year but it just seems like a lot to fans when you consider he averages 162 targets per season over the last 5 years which is top 5 in the NFL.
    Last edited by ChampPik4Six; 08-12-2018 at 10:17 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChampPik4Six View Post
    People need to relax on the criticism of DT. The man is the 2nd leading WR in Broncos history and is 1 of 4 players all time with four consecutive seasons of 1,300 yards and 10+ TDs---yet there is a section of Broncos fans that treat and talk about the guy like he took their girlfriend. Its really strange. I dont think I have ever seen a franchise throw jabs at one of their Pro Bowl level players who never misses games, plays through injuries, is a golden child off the field and frankly is a extremely easy to root for personality quite like Broncos fans do with Demaryius Thomas.

    Your criticism of others is cute at best.

    If people are going to constantly jump on DT for being paid a lot of money but having up and down production sometimes then why not point that same hatred at Von Miller who is the highest paid defensive player in the NFL and finished last season 18th in sacks.

    Ok. Let's "jump" on all the players making X amount of money. Feel better?

    As far as his drops, he had the same amount last year as Keenan Allen, Dez Bryant, Julio Jones, Amare Cooper and Jimmy Graham. Drops happen when your as as heavily targeted as some of these #1 WRs are especially when you have a rotating door of QBs. 2 years ago he was targeted 144 times and dropped 7 balls for a drop rate of only 4.9%. Lower drop rate than Travis Kelce and Michael Crabtree. Cut the guy some slack, he does drop 5-8 passes a year but it just seems like a lot to fans when you consider he averages 162 targets per season over the last 5 years which is top 5 in the NFL.

    Do you make excuses for everyone or just the people you like?
    Responses in bold.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mozzerpete View Post
    Responses in bold.
    If I may add to the above.

    2016 Season:

    REC: 90
    YDS: 1,083
    TDs: 5
    AVG: 12 YDS a catch
    Long: 55 YDS

    $20 Million Salary SPOTRAC

    2017 Season:

    REC: 83
    YDS: 949
    TDs: 5
    AVG: 11.4 YDS a catch
    Long: 40 YDS

    $12.5 Million Salary SPOTRAC

    For a player making 13-15 Million a year I expect more. While due the cap a newer contracts dwarfing DT's make him less of that top tier WR paywise this season these last two years have not been great for the money he is paid.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mozzerpete View Post
    Responses in bold.
    1) Its valid, while I have never understood others critisism for a 1,400+ 10TD year after year receiver. Didnt hear anybody complaining when Peyton was here and he performed like a top 3 WR in the NFL. People in the past 2 years are looking to place blame. Maybe look at Elway for his QB blunders and having to rotate Brock, Siemian and Lynch while expecting your WR to look as good as he did with a good QB throwing him the ball.

    2) Considering everyones beef with DT is the money he is making in coorelation to his recent production--yes, why would Von Millers situiation not fall into the exact same category.

    3) Putting his 'drops' into perspective for those who want to aimlessly and wrongfully get up in arms who act like DT drops 15 more passes per year than any other good WR in the NFL is more educational to paint a realistic picture.
    Last edited by ChampPik4Six; 08-14-2018 at 01:04 PM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich_C View Post
    If I may add to the above.

    2016 Season:

    REC: 90
    YDS: 1,083
    TDs: 5
    AVG: 12 YDS a catch
    Long: 55 YDS

    $20 Million Salary SPOTRAC

    2017 Season:

    REC: 83
    YDS: 949
    TDs: 5
    AVG: 11.4 YDS a catch
    Long: 40 YDS

    $12.5 Million Salary SPOTRAC

    For a player making 13-15 Million a year I expect more. While due the cap a newer contracts dwarfing DT's make him less of that top tier WR paywise this season these last two years have not been great for the money he is paid.
    If you expect more than get him a QB that doesnt resemble a trash can. No good WR can produce when arguable the worst starting QB in the NFL is throwing them the ball every week for 2 years. For example, look at Antonio Browns production when Ben got injured and Landry had to QB for some of the season. Maybe look at Deandre Hopkins production in 2016 when Brock Osweiler was his QB and he went 78/954/4

    The only WR I have ever seen overcome consistent horrible QB play and still look like a Pro Bowler is Josh Gordon in 2013. A WR is only going to produce as much as the QB throwing him the ball gives him the chances. To expect DT to somehow look like a 97/1,300/10 WR with Trevor Siemian throwing him the ball is insane.

    There is a direct correlation with WR production and the quality of QB throwing them the ball in the same sense that sack numbers and pressures largely depend on how good your secondary is and vise versa. Its a lot harder to generate a great sack numbers when you have a secondary that can get picked apart. Just like its really hard to catch 1,000 yards and 10 TDs with the 30th ranked starting QB in the NFL throwing the ball to you.
    Last edited by ChampPik4Six; 08-14-2018 at 01:10 PM.

  12. #12
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    Man... if no alcohol, pork, and dairy fixc his hip issues, maybe I should try it.

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