Originally posted on Fox Sports Florida  |  Last updated 5/16/13
Quiet demeanor. Always smiling. Gentle giant. Not exactly words that come to mind when describing a person who makes his living in NFL trenches. Then again, those descriptions arent why the Miami Dolphins selected Dallas Thomas in the third round of last month's NFL Draft. General manager Jeff Ireland focused on other Thomas characteristics: athletic, hardworking, eager to learn. Thomas, taken with the 77th overall pick, has an opportunity to impact Miami right away. The 6-foot-5, 306-pound Baton Rouge, La., native played both guard and tackle at Tennessee, and the Dolphins need offensive line help. I fully expect him to be in there and playing, said former NFL lineman Antone Davis, football coordinator for Tennessees Vol For Life program. Obviously, a lot depends on how he comes back from the injury, but I expect him to be in there and starting." The injury Davis mentioned is a torn labrum that he suffered during Senior Bowl practice in January. Thomas attended the NFL Combine in February but did not perform drills because of a 4-6 month recuperation period. Obviously, the labrum injury was not a major concern for the Dolphins. I dont want to put any timeline on their recovery, Ireland said afterdrafting Thomas and first-round pick Dion Jordan, whos recovering from a similar injury. We certainly felt comfortable drafting them where we drafted them for them to make a contribution this season. Davis said Miami probably liked Thomas versatility at tackle and guard. It makes you more valuable to the team, said Davis, who played tackle and guard at UT before a pro career with the Philadelphia Eagles and Atlanta Falcons. The most impressive thing about Dallas is he switched from tackle to guard without complaining about it. Most guys, after playing a while at a position, dont like being asked to change. Thomas was a two-year starter at left tackle when he moved to left guard so the Vols could get their five best linemen in the game. I called him in and I explained the reasons why, said former UT offensive line coach Sam Pittman, speaking this week while on the recruiting trail for Arkansas. I also thought it could help him in the draft. All Dallas said was, I trust you, Coach. He got up and walked out of theroom. To trust us meant a lot to us. Pittman said he spoke with Ireland several times about Thomas before the draft. Among the things the coach discussed with the GM was Thomas work ethic. Hes got a quiet demeanor, and hell represent the city of Miami well,Pittman said. He tries to learn everything he can as fast as he can. One thing Thomas has not been eager to do is get a haircut, something he hasnt done in more than seven years. Dallas mom, Dawn, made a point to say her son has had his hair trimmed. He likes his dreads, said Dawn, who raised Dallas and younger brother Donato while working at the family bail bond business.During the Dolphins recent rookie camp, Thomas dreads protruded from the back of a skullcap. Everybody has their superstitions, Davis said. I told Dallas he needed to donate his hair to Locks of Love, though I dont know if anybody would that stuff after playing football. Dawn Thomas said her son told her to discuss nothing personal about him during an interview. She did say, however, Dallas loves to go to church and is a good cook. Ask him to make you gumbo, she said. Its not easy to make. Hes my gentle giant, Dawn Thomas added. Just dont mess with his food. Charlie McCarthy can be reached at mac1763@bellsouth.net or on Twitter @mccarthy_chas
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Rex Ryan still angry with Mario Williams over criticism

Report: Thunder players critical of Durant, Westbrook after loss

Klay Thompson felt he should have made more three-pointers

WATCH: Steven Adams makes a monster dunk on Draymond Green

WATCH: Noah Syndergaard tossed after throwing behind Chase Utley


White Sox in talks to acquire James Shields from Padres

NBA player shot and killed after reportedly breaking into apartment

Dodgers send top prospect back to minors after one game

DeRozan: ‘My mindset has always been Toronto’

Will soccer superstar Lionel Messi have to miss the Copa America?

Did you know Peyton Manning was "pretty close" to QBing for Titans?

Giants positioning themselves for another World Series run

Athletes who served in the United States military

WATCH: Warriors owner bowed down to Klay Thompson

Baylor QB recruit hints that he could decommit

WATCH: Edelman screams 'free Brady!' at Boston concert

Six NFL players who will cash out big in final year of contract

Baylor QB Russell's Instagram post about program on return from mission trip

Titans' Walker not friends with rookies until they make team

Lue had vulgar reaction to Blatt firing, urged team to reconsider

Would trading Okafor or Noel make sense for the 76ers?

Why Zlatan Ibrahimovic belongs at Manchester United

Winston lost 18 pounds to deter sophomore slump

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

How expanded instant replay has hurt the NBA

Best regular-season NBA teams not to win a championship

Every time an NBA team came back from a 3-1 deficit (and what it means for the Warriors)

How disallowed goals can change the course of NHL games

The five most disappointing MLB teams this season

QUIZ: Identify these NHL Hall of Famers by their nicknames

QUIZ: Name every winner of the Belmont Stakes since 1867

Sniping quotes highlight NHL conference finals animosity

QUIZ: Name every NBA franchise's original incarnation

The 15 biggest playoff upsets in NBA history

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker