2023 DE Eric Thomas Jr. earns spot on Youth1's Freshman450 | Youth1

2023 DE Eric Thomas Jr. earns spot on Youth1's Freshman450

Eric Thomas Jr. is one of the most imposing defensive ends in Mississippi. The 6-foot-3, 230-pound Thomas Jr., who attends New Hope High School, is selected to the 2019 Youth1 Freshman450.

Thomas Jr., who has missed all of this season due to injury, finds great motivation in being a part of the national list.

“It’s truly a blessing that I have accomplished this, but at the same time I know I still have to work hard to get where I want to be,” Thomas Jr. said.

Thomas Jr. breaks down his strengths on the field. Thomas Jr. is not just an excellent athlete but possesses supreme fundamentals as well.

“I’m very physical with my hands and quick off the ball also very explosive. I think fast when I’m on the field because of my technique. When I get off the ball I already have a plan in my head what I’m going to do,” Thomas Jr. said. “My upper body and lower body strength allows me to explode off the ball and do what I need to do to get the tackle/do my job.”

Thomas Jr. lists some of his proudest recent accomplishments.  

“I’ve been selected to play in the UA Next All American game, won All-Combine at the Southern Elite 150 Camp and top 5 defensive linemen at The Show that was hosted at IMG Academy,” Thomas Jr. said.  

Thomas Jr. shares what’s upcoming on his agenda.

“I am participating in a few camps this spring. The camp that Alabama football is hosting, The Show sponsored by Battle, Baylor football camp, Ole Miss football camp, and Mississippi State football camp,” Thomas Jr. said. “I’m preparing for these camps by always keeping my get off top notch and the explosion I have . Keeping my hands quick and hand coordination. Keeping my body solid and strong.”

Thomas Jr. lives for the intensity on the gridiron and never backs down from a challenge.

“I love how physical the game is,” Thomas Jr. said.

Thomas Jr. is extremely enamored by the battling and jousting at defensive end.

“What I love about that position is how it’s mostly in the trenches because I love to get very competitive,” Thomas Jr. said.

Thomas Jr. does his best to incorporate aspects from this defensive force into his game.

“I admire Khalil Mack because of how strong he is and his speed getting off the ball,” Thomas Jr. said.

As Thomas Jr. moves towards his return, he’s set specific goals that he’s striving to achieve.

“I’m working on improving mostly my lower body strength,” Thomas Jr. said. “Becoming bigger and stronger also keeping my hands on point.”

With the Freshman450 as validating, Thomas Jr. is encouraged that the best is yet to come in his fledgling career.

“I feel great as I’m progressing as a football player,” Thomas Jr. said. “Every time I train with my trainer or train with my high school team I feel I’m getting stronger and wiser for the game of football.”



To view the entire Freshman450, please click -> here.

For more on Eric Thomas Jr., check out his Youth1 Media Profile -> here.

View his highlights below.

Article written by Rolando Rosa.


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