Cleveland Browns Pro Bowl left tackle Joe Thomas may have been part of trade speculation in 2015, and mentioned that he is unsure about his future with the Browns following the 2015-16 regular season, but things have seemed to change since the team hired the offensive-minded Hue Jackson to be its next head coach. While talking to WKYC’s Dave Chudowsky at the IX Center’s NARI Home Show over the weekend, the future Hall of Famer made it known that getting a guy like Jackson as head coach is “awesome for the Browns” and that he definitely wants to be part of the rebuild that will (again) happen in Cleveland.
“Certainly, I love the people in Cleveland. It’s my home. I love the city. I love everything about it,” he told Chudowsky. “So I definitely want to be part of the turnaround.”
Getting the approval of a nine-time Pro Bowler is certainly a positive for the Browns, especially from a guy like Thomas who has been through so many different offenses and so many different regimes in Cleveland yet wants to be a Brown. New Executive Vice President of Football Operations Sashi Brown also put an end to the Thomas trade rumors in an interview with ESPN 850-WKNR over the weekend. Said the new front office head of the Thomas trade discussions, “That’s nothing that we’re thinking about here. We expect Joe to be back and be a big piece of what we’re doing.”
The reassuring news brought a smile to Thomas, who has been in Cleveland since he was drafted by the Browns with the third overall selection in 2007.
“I almost got traded last year during the season, but that’s something that as a player you can’t really worry about too much,” Thomas said.
Brown made sure to mention how important Thomas is for the future of this team. Not only is he a veteran that can lead the young players, but the Wisconsin graduate is one of the best left tackles in NFL history.
“He’s a guy that’s going to be a big piece of what we do moving forward. He has a tremendous amount of insight that we will glean from,” Brown said.
While the Browns may have had the worst record (tied with Tennessee) in 2015-16, at least they now know that their Pro Bowl left tackle wants to be part of the turnaround that will (hopefully) happen in the near future.