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Noel Thomas Jr. Impressing at Detroit Lions Camp

Though he surprisingly went undrafted this past May, Noel Thomas is opening some eyes in training camp with the Lions.

Ian Bethune

Much to the surprise of those who follow UConn Football, Husky wide receiver Noel Thomas went undrafted in the 2017 NFL Draft. Even the most pessimistic UConn fan would have thought Thomas, who caught 100 balls as a senior and made some incredible plays, showing great catching ability, would have heard his name called in the NFL’s annual selection meeting.

Unfortunately, a slow 40-time at the NFL Combine hurt his stock and even though he did much better at his Pro Day and had a lot of teams interested, the seven rounds of the draft came and went without him getting the call.

Thomas ended up signing as an undrafted free agent with the Detroit Lions, where he’ll have a decent chance to compete for a spot on the depth chart. So far, a few days into training camp, the Norwalk, Conn. native has stood out, catching the eye of many in attendance.

Writers from Pro Football Focus, Pride of Detroit (SB Nation’s Detroit Lions site), and MLive have all taken note:

It’s obviously very early, and just about every team has a camp sleeper who fans and writers alike fall in love with every year, but undrafted free agents usually don’t get this much (Twitter) ink.

If he can keep this up, Thomas’ knack for making plays will give him a good chance to make the final roster. If not, the Lions would almost definitely keep him on the practice squad, but he’d be susceptible to being picked up by another team for their 53-man roster off waivers.

It’s not the ideal path, but Thomas is proving what he’s worth on the field and will have opportunities as a result, either in Detroit or elsewhere.

The lesson, as we’ve known for a while: Noel Thomas is good.