Metairie, La. — Michael Thomas got paid Wednesday and was back with his team Thursday morning for day 6 of the Saints training camp. Thomas had been holding-out and did not report last Thursday with the other veterans and he and his agent worked with the team to come to a new contract agreement. $100 million later, the Saints top receiver was back doing what he does best, and is ready to continue to prove his worth.
“After I signed that deal I told Mickey [Loomis] I’ll be back to do a third deal,” Thomas said. “It’s just the process and what the timing was there. Now it’s on to the next goal. You’re now the highest paid and now you’ve got to go earn it. That’s my biggest thing I’m trying to do. I’m trying to earn every penny of it.”
For Thomas, making history in the league runs in his family, starting with his uncle, Keyshawn Johnson.
“I come from a competitive family,” Thomas said. “My uncle was the first receiver drafted in 1996 overall number one and when I got drafted, it was what it was. I went second, 47th and stuff like that but I had to control what I could control. Now I feel like we both have a little something to talk about. We’ll see which one hold more weight. Just being a competitor and wanting to be the best, I feel like when you set high goals and you attack them, there’s rewards at the end of it.”
The reward is also for his teammates and coaches, who are all just as happy to have him back out on the field.
“He’s an important part of what we do offensively,” said Saints Head Coach Sean Payton. “He’s experienced. Felt real positive. I knew Mike was going to come in in good shape so it’s good to have him back. Good to see him out there moving around.”
“It’s awesome,” Brees said. “Great to have him back. Knew it was only a matter of time. The timing’s good to get him back in the fold. We’re still at the beginning of our install for the most part so he came in today as if he’s been here the whole time.”
“I’m pretty sure he’ll do something special for the guys,” said Saints quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. “He has a great heart. It’s great to get a guy like him back out here with us — his energy and his presence on the field. You know he’s here and it’s great to have him back.”
“There’s definitely a presence, an attitude, a swagger to what he brings to the field,” Brees said. “You know when he’s out there, there’s no half-speed rep. Everything is 1,000 miles an hour, mach 3 with your hair on fire with Mike. I think everybody else elevates their game to that. He makes the guys he’s going up against better– the DBs.”