Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas isn’t hiding from the fact that his year hasn’t gone as planned, but the redshirt junior revealed Tuesday that he will likely file paperwork with the NFL draft advisory board “just to see” what talent evaluators think about him once the Hokies’ season is complete.
The Lynchburg, Va., native told reporters two weeks ago that he plans to remain at Virginia Tech for his senior season, and did not indicate his mind had changed in that regard on Tuesday.
But after some predicted Thomas could be a top five pick, his draft stock has taken a hit during a campaign that has seen him throw 14 interceptions, the second most by a Football Bowl Subdivision quarterback this year.
“I would say it’s middle of the road,” Thomas said when asked to evaluate his performance this year. “I’m not excited with how I’ve been playing [and] I’m not hating how I’ve been playing. Interceptions are up, but like I’ve said before, it’s because of a number of different things. They’re not all my fault.
“People look at interceptions and say automatically I had a worse year. But you know, in some part I think I’m a lot better than I was last year. Just being able to handle the entire offense, making checks [at the line of scrimmage], you know, being more of a part of the running game. There’s a lot of good things I’m doing well.”
Quarterbacks coach and play-caller Mike O’Cain agrees with his 6-foot-6, 260-pound pupil. He said Monday night that aside from Thomas’s two interceptions against Florida State last week, “he played about as good as he’s played since he’s been here.”
Thomas set a school record in total offense last season and accounted for 30 total touchdowns en route to earning second-team all-ACC honors. But he has seen his completion percentage drop from 59.8 percent to 53.6 percent. He also has six interceptions over the last three games.
But O’Cain thinks some of the criticism Thomas receives has been unfair.
“My confidence in him, I’ve called the games just like I would’ve called them if he was completing every pass he was throwing. Nothing has changed,” O’Cain said, before addressing the Florida State game. “The only thing people see is that he had two interceptions. That’s all they remember. They don’t see all the other little things that have to take place for us to have a chance at the end. If he’s not out there, we don’t have a chance at the end.”
For his part, Thomas said Tuesday one thing he plans to work on this season is his accuracy throwing on the run. He also has a tendency to overthrow receivers, particularly when there’s pressure in his face.
But Coach Frank Beamer has been a staunch defender of his quarterback all year, and he once again came to his defense on Tuesday.
“I think we’ve got to continue to improve around him,” Beamer said. “I’ve said it a bunch of times. But consistency around him would help Logan. And that to me . . . he’s had some throws that he’d like to have back. A couple decisions that he’d like to have back. But anybody that’s played the game would have that.”
Thomas added that the spotlight on his up-and-down play doesn’t bother him. As O’Cain put it, “You don’t like it at all, but that’s the way it is. . . . That’s one of the only positions that everybody thinks they know what they should be doing because they see him every time. He’s out there, he’s out there on an island.”
“If some of these people say stuff to my face — they sit there behind computers, cellphones, whatever – maybe we’d have a problem,” Thomas said. “But I don’t think anybody is going to say something to my face.”