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Joe Thomas Would Rather Go Fishing

When draft day 2007 rolls around in less than two weeks, there will be one player missing that received an invite to New York City.  Offensive lineman Joe Thomas, who is basically a guaranteed top five pick, was invited to come to NYC on the first day of the draft to be present for when he is selected as it will be rather early.  Thomas was flattered by the invitation, but he already had plans to go fishing.  Out of the two choices-to go fishing or attend the draft and be featured live on stage-you'd expect attending the draft to be the choice of all players.  Joe Thomas is different though, as he already had plans to go fishing, and will honor that commitment.

Thomas, an All-American offensive tackle from the University of Wisconsin, will be at home in suburban Milwaukee. He and his father, Eric, have planned to go fishing on Lake Michigan, as they often do this time of year.

"You know what?" Joe Thomas asked over the telephone the other day. "For me, the whole NFL draft show is not really what I'm all about. I don't define myself by where I go in the draft.

"I define myself by how I play in the NFL. I don't want the NFL draft to be the celebration of the end of my career. I'd rather spend the day at home with my family and have a last few days before I'm shipped off and get ready for the NFL season.

"I'm not preparing to have a big celebration on NFL draft day. That's not what I'm all about. I want the transition to be smooth from college to the pros, and not make a big deal about the draft."

I absolutely love this move by Thomas.  He isn't buying into the whole production that ESPN makes out of these players and would rather be with his family.  You have to respect that.

Thomas has long been Detroit's pick in most mock drafts since they have been out.  Recently though, Gaines Adams has taken over as the Lions' selection.  Is that how it will pan out on draft day?  Maybe.  Until then, Joe Thomas will be worried about how many fish he will catch rather than where he is drafted.

Don't worry folks, Thomas won't be completely cut off from the draft.  His agent "advised" him to bring his cell phone so he can be informed of where he will be playing in the NFL.  

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