Today the Oakland Raiders announced they have claimed LB Chase Thomas off waivers following his release by New Orleans on Monday. He will add quality depth to a position that has had some trouble with injuries so far with Kaluka Maiava and Miles Burris missing time in camp.
Once waived, the Raiders wasted no time in claiming the 6'3", 241-pound Thomas. I watched plenty of Stanford football in the last few years, and Thomas is a stud. He is always around the ball, and is excellent at pass rushing, run defense and coverage from the OLB slot. In his senior year at Stanford he collected 71 tackles including 7.5 sacks and an interception. He has a very high motor and was an all-conference selection. He is a main reason the Cardinal defense was one of the finest in the country for the last few years. I was very surprised to see that he was not drafted in April.
As a Raider he will be expected to back up OLBs Sio Moore and Kevin Burnett. He can move inside in a pinch, but OLB is where the real depth issues are and if Burris can't go then Thomas is as good an option as anyone. Also important to note is that in Thomas' first two years at Stanford his defensive coordinator was Jason Tarver, who currently holds that position with the Raiders. I'm sure Tarver is excited to get Thomas back, and if there's anyone who knows exactly how best to use Chase Thomas, it's Jason Tarver.
How do you guys think Thomas will fit in here? Do you think this was a good signing for the team? What does this mean for Miles Burris?
You can read the full press release here.