Julius Thomas TE DEN 10 Days

Thomas had three catches on four targets for 17 yards and a touchdown Sunday against the Seahawks.

Thomas was very quiet for most of the game, with his touchdown coming on a shovel pass with 9:20 left in the fourth quarter. His receiving yards have declined from 104 to 39 to 17, but he has scored a touchdown in every game this season (five overall), which keeps him as a valuable fantasy piece despite the decrease in yards. His streak will take a week off, as the Broncos head out on bye before facing the Cardinals in Week 5.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 17 Days1 Comment

Thomas had four catches on five targets for 39 yards and a touchdown Sunday against the Chiefs.

Thomas' touchdown was his fourth of the season after his monster 104-yard, three-touchdown performance in Week 1. While the volume wasn't there Sunday, he remains a trusted receiver for quarterback Peyton Manning, which should keep him heavily involved in the passing game. Up next is a very tough game at Seattle.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 24 Days

Thomas caught seven passes for 104 yards and three touchdowns on eight targets in Sunday's win over the Colts.

Thomas was dominant early on, catching all three of his touchdowns in the second quarter. He did have one slip up in the second half, as he put the ball on the ground, and was fortunate to have it roll to a teammate. On a night in which WR Demaryius Thomas uncharacteristically did very little with his 11 targets, (Julius) Thomas ranked third on the team with eight targets, one behind Emmanuel Sanders. Thomas seems to be enjoying life without Wes Welker (concussion) and Eric Decker, as there isn't quite as much competition for Peyton Manning's attention.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 1 Month

Thomas had four catches on four targets for 32 yards in Saturday's preseason game against the Texans.

The expectations for Thomas were already high after his breakout 2013 season, especially with Eric Decker signing with the Jets in the offseason. With the news that Wes Welker could miss Week 1 after he suffered a concussion Saturday, Thomas could be the beneficiary of even more targets, particularly in the red zone.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 1 Month

Thomas had three catches on three targets for 35 yards and a touchdown during Sunday's preseason game against the 49ers.

Thomas dealt with a bruised thigh earlier this month, but there was nothing Sunday that indicated it's still bothering him. As long as he's healthy, Thomas is an elite fantasy tight end, who could see even more red zone targets this season with Eric Decker now with the Jets.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 2 Months

Julius Thomas spent time working with Tony Gonzalez this offseason.

Thomas and Gonzalez live near each other in the Los Angeles area. "I picked his brain on, what are sort of the things you're looking for?" Thomas said. "Not just technique, but what's going through your mind during plays? What do you focus on? How do you prepare for the day? His routine." By all accounts, Orange Julius has not rested on his breakout 2013 season that saw him finish as fantasy's No. 3 tight end. With Eric Decker gone and Thomas in a contract year, there's room for significant statistical growth.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 2 Months

Julius Thomas told Larry Brown Sports he "absolutely" wants to stay in Denver long term.

Thomas is entering a contract year, and GM John Elway has made it clear he doesn't value J.T. at Jimmy Graham's level. Thomas doesn't seem to mind. "Absolutely," said the ascending 26-year-old. "I love Denver. It's a great city. I really love that franchise, fan base, I would look forward to being there for a long time." Thomas could be a candidate for the franchise tag in 2015.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 3 Months

Broncos GM John Elway made it clear to USA Today that he doesn't believe contract-year TE Julius Thomas deserves Jimmy Graham money.

The Saints signed Graham to a four-year, $40 million deal with $21 million guaranteed. "Even though Julius had a tremendous year for us, he's only (played) 23 games," said Elway. "We want Julius to be a Bronco for a long time and we think he has tremendous upside, but he's not at that level." In other words, if Julius isn't willing to accept something of a hometown discount, the Broncos would feel comfortable letting "Orange Julius" play out his contract year absent a long-term commitment. They could franchise tag him in 2015. Thomas caught 21 fewer passes than Graham in 2013, for 427 fewer yards and four fewer touchdowns. He's also used far more often as an in-line tight end than Graham, so the Broncos could win a tight end/wide receiver arbitration case if things got that far.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 3 Months

Julius Thomas said he'll be used "a lot more creatively" this season.

It's easy to forget that Thomas played just one season of college football at Portland State and entered last season with one catch in two NFL seasons. He's still a developing prospect despite going off for 65-788-12 last season. "I think there are a lot of things that our offense wanted to do with me, but you can only learn so much in one year," he said. Now entering his second year as a starter, Thomas will be asked to expand his route tree and help compensate for the loss of Eric Decker -- especially in the red zone. Another 12-15 touchdowns for Orange Julius is well within reach.

Julius Thomas TE DEN 3 Months6 Comments

Broncos TE Julius Thomas said he's monitoring the arbitration case between the Saints and Jimmy Graham.

Thomas is in the final year of his rookie deal and could be franchised next offseason. Like Graham, he lines up in multiple spots on offense and will likely try to make a similar case if Graham's grievance is successful. The Broncos have approached Thomas about a contract extension, so the decision has the potential to impact long-term talks. "I've kind of been keeping an eye on that situation, obviously, because it could probably come back to affect a lot of us tight ends," Thomas said. "I think that if you're a guy that makes plays, that's how you should be valued."