Drafted: ROUND: 3 - Pick Number: 87 (ARI)
Draft Profile: BioCameron Thomas played for three years at Carlsbad High School in California. He recorded 88 tackles the final two years to go along with five tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks, a pass deflection, and a fumble recovery. On offense as a tight end had 22 receptions for 294 yards (13.4 avg.) and four touchdowns. He was rated a three-star recruit by 247sports and a two-star recruit by Rivals. He joined San Diego State after receiving offers from Oregon State, Wyoming, and Navy.
As a freshman Thomas started 12 of the team’s 13 games at defensive tackle and played in all 13.Had 49 tackles, including 9.0 tackles for loss, 6sacks, two pass breakups and 13 quarterback hurries. Following the season he received second-team freshman All-America accolades from The Athletic and was named an all-Mountain West first-team selection.
As a sophomore in a COVID shortened season he chalked up 35 tackles (21 solo) in eight starts, including 9.5 tackles for 48 yards of loss, four sacks for 34 yards,14 quarterback hurries and ranked second in FBS in 2020 in quarterback pressures (37) among defensive tackles. As a result, was named an all-Mountain West first-team selection by the league’s media and coaches.
As a junior in 2021, Thomas exploded with 12 sacks (7th nationally in sacks per game), 21 QB hits, and a massive 44 QB hurries. He was awarded the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year, as voted on by the coaches and media.
Scouting Report: Strengths
- Faced multiple double and triple teams throughout his career and still managed to put up great pass rushing numbers. At times he was simply un-blockable
- Has elite hand speed and is equally impressive disengaging from offensive tackles
- Has a pro-ready bag of pass-rush skills --an impressive spin move and an even more dominating bull rush
- Very good athlete with great size, length, and elite pass rush moves to make an ideal 4-3 defensive end
- Handles himself against bigger tackles when moving outside to prevent an edge rush he has the speed and quickness to counter inside with an elite level swim move
- He is a TFL demon as he blows up run plays on a regular basis
- Offers impressive versatility - plays as a 0, 3, 5, and 7 technique and rushes from a two-and three-point stance with the playing speed to stand up in space. Flashes strength as a bull rusher and his energy doesn't plateau.
- Flashes nimble feet to chase running backs and mobile quarterbacks to the sideline when lined up at end. Spins off blocks to get back into the play.
- Has fluid footwork to redirect, reverse momentum and close with a burst. Regularly first off the ball with good snap anticipation.
- Easily gains inside leverage by shooting gaps.
- Smart player with a high football IQ and an amazing none stop motor
- Possesses accurate snap anticipation and timing to beat blockers off the edge.
Scouting Report: Weaknesses
- Never out of a play, but can get out of control and work himself away from the action.
- Is a very good athlete but not quite as quick twitch as you would ideally look for and doesn't have the elite speed of a perfect edge rusher
- Can burn himself out in games - and seems to visibly tire in the fourth quarter of games
- Stands up well against the run but is very pursuit-conscious and will take unneeded wide angles.
- Plays tall and gets upright off the snap. Wins with upper-body strength and needs to focus on leverage
Scouting Report: SummaryCameron Thomas is rocketing up draft boards at the moment and with good reason, he's athletic with an incredible set of pass-rushing that scare offensive linemen. He has no major weakness to his game that can't be worked out and therefore we're very high on him. His ceiling is at the all-pro/pro-bowler level with his floor a solid NFL starter. To us, he looks bust-proof.
Cameron Thomas is worthy of a late-first-round selection in the 2022 NFL Draft and should be considered as almost in the same class as Thibodeaux, Hutchinson, and Karlaftis.
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