The New Orleans Saints elite receiver is trying to make a comeback.
Michael Thomas participated in 11-on-11 drills for the first time in nearly two years Saturday.
Thomas sat out the end of the 2020 season with an ankle injury, and he’s on the back burner for the 2021 season.
Head coach Dennis Allen said Thomas is gaining confidence in his ankle strength.
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“Honestly, he ended up on the field twice,” Allen said, via ESPN.
“It’s all part of the process of building that confidence. I think he’s in a good frame of mind right now. I think he’s looking good physically. I’m excited for where he’s at.”
Thomas led the NFL in catches in 2018 and 2019, setting the NFL record for most receptions in a season (149) in 2019. He led the NFL with 1,729 receiving yards that season and was named Offensive Player of the Year.
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In each of his four NFL seasons, Thomas has at least 90 catches and 1,100 yards, with both numbers increasing each year. He averaged 118 catches, 1,378 yards and eight touchdowns per season.
He played in just seven games in 2020 and he last played on January 17, 2021 against the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC divisional round.
Thomas did not participate in OTAs in June, but has been practicing in a limited capacity since the first day of training camp.
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The Saints open the season in Atlanta against the Falcons, and Thomas will need to build a relationship with quarterback Jameis Winston. Thomas last played when Drew Brees was still the Saints QB.