Thomas has been working as the No. 1 tight end at OTAs, Aaron Reiss of The Athletic reports.
Ryan Griffin's release leaves Houston with one veteran blocking specialist (Darren Fells) and three recent draft picks at tight end. Thomas was only a sixth-round selection last year, but he started 10 games and posted a 20-215-4 receiving line on 27 targets, while third-round pick Jordan Akins made six starts and went for 17-225-0 on 25 chances. Houston then used a 2019 third-round pick on Kahale Warring, an impressive athlete who caught just 51 passes during his college career at San Diego State. With Warring likely needing some time to develop, Thomas and Akins will battle this summer for the top pass-catching role. Houston tight ends accounted for 95 targets (T-17th) last season, representing 19.3 percent (13th) of total team volume.
Thomas caught his lone target for six yards in Sunday's 20-3 win over Jacksonville.
This was the third straight week that Thomas was limited to one target, as Houston's tight ends have been an ignored bunch all season. He finished the regular season with four touchdowns to lead the position group, but Houston's passing attack focuses mainly on its wide receivers.
Thomas was targeted once and did not have a catch in Sunday's 32-30 loss to the Eagles.
Houston's rotation of tight ends had a relatively good game with a combined eight targets, four catches and 48 yards, but Thomas was on the short end of that production. Ryan Griffin (four targets, two catches) and Jordan Akins (three, two) were more active in the passing attack during a game in which quarterback Deshaun Watson threw 40 times. If the Texans can't solve their rushing woes -- 3.2 YPC over the last three weeks -- they'll need to rely on Watson's arm. With Demaryius Thomas (Achilles) out for the rest of the season and Keke Coutee (hamstring) battling a nagging injury, that opens the door for Houston's tight ends.
Thomas caught one pass for two yards in Saturday's 29-22 win over the Jets.
One week after Houston's tight ends were heavily involved in the passing game, Thomas and the rest of the position group combined for just two targets Saturday. Unless DeAndre Hopkins' ankle injury turns into something more serious, none of the Texans' tight ends are worth considering Week 16 against the Eagles.
Thomas caught all four of his targets for 31 yards in Sunday's 24-21 loss to the Colts.
With Houston's wideout corps culled due to injury and DeAndre Hopkins getting extra-special attention from Indianapolis' secondary, the tight ends increased their profile within the offense Sunday. Thomas, Ryan Griffin (five catches, 80 yards) and Jordan Akins (two catches, 40 yards) all made contributions Sunday, a rarity for the position group this season. Keke Coutee (hamstring) missed his eighth game, and DeAndre Carter left the game with a concussion, so their status heading into Week 15 against the Jets will impact the potential value of Houston's tight ends next week.
Thomas caught all three of his targets for 32 yards, including an 11-yard touchdown, in Sunday's 29-13 win over Cleveland.
Week 13 turned out to be Thomas' turn to lead the Texans' tight ends. He scored his fourth touchdown of the season, which also leads the position group -- neither Ryan Griffin nor Jordan Akins have a touchdown catch in 2018. Griffin gets the most playing time and targets, but quarterback Deshaun Watson will throw to any of them, which makes it difficult to pinpoint one as a fantasy starter in any given week.
Thomas caught his lone target for a seven-yard touchdown in Sunday's 19-17 win over the Broncos.
Thomas found paydirt for the third time in two games. The rookie tight end is making the most of his 14 targets, catching nine of them for three touchdowns and 14.1 yards per catch. The Texans were thin at wideout for this game -- Will Fuller (knee) is done for the season and Keke Coutee (hamstring) was inactive -- and we saw the tight end position group targeted six times, 25 percent of Deshaun Watson's pass attempts, which is a lot for that unit.
Thomas brought in all four of his targets for 29 yards and two touchdowns in the Texans' 42-23 win over the Dolphins on Thursday.
The rookie tight end saw extended playing time with Ryan Griffin (illness) out of action and made excellent use of the opportunity. Thomas' early second-quarter 13-yard scoring grab snapped a 7-7 tie and served as the first touchdown of his career. His subsequent two-yard end-zone connection with Deshaun Watson extended the Texans' lead to 21-10 at the time. Thomas' reception total Thursday was a career high and could help him in his ongoing case to carve out a larger role in the Houston offense. Even with Griffin expected back for a Week 9 contest against the Broncos that doesn't take place for another 10 days, Thomas could see a fair share of snaps in his own right.
Thomas and fellow tight end Jordan Akins will step in for starter Ryan Griffin (illness), who has been ruled out of Thursday's game against Miami, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.
This same state existed in Week 7, and the Thomas/Akins duo had a combined one target. Thomas (55 snaps) got the bulk of playing time as he's considered the better blocker of the two, and we should see a repeat of last week's playing-time split. Miami's 29th-ranked run defense could be vulnerable to Lamar Miller and Alfred Blue all night long.
Thomas did not catch his lone target in Sunday's 20-7 win over the Jaguars.
Both Thomas and Jordan Akins were in the starting lineup Sunday with Ryan Griffin (illness) inactive, but it didn't translate to improved production. The duo combined for just the one target, as Houston relied heavily on its ground game. They figure to do so once again Week 8, Thursday night against the Dolphins. Miami has allowed nearly 137 rushing yards per game this season.
Thomas is expected to receive more playing time with Ryan Griffin (illness) ruled out of Sunday's game against the Jaguars, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Both Thomas and Jordan Akins will get a bump in playing time, although that might not mean much against a Jacksonville defense that's tied with Baltimore as the league's top-ranked passing defense. The opponent, along with a banged-up quarterback, might lead Houston to rely on its running attack Week 7. Thomas has been targeted just eight times (four catches) through six games.
Coach Bill O'Brien said Thomas "probably needs to be in there more," during a session with reporters Monday.
Thomas caught two passes for 53 yards in Sunday's loss to the Giants and is averaging 26.7 yards per catch this season. "Yeah, big guy that can run. He used to be a wide receiver, got really good hands, getting better as a blocker, so we have to continue to work with him," said the coach. Thomas has played just 25 percent of the snaps on offense while sharing the position with Ryan Griffin and fellow rookie Jordan Akins.
Thomas caught both of his targets for 53 yards in a Week 3 loss to the Giants.
Thomas popped up on the injury report last week with a hip injury but was in the active lineup. He led the position group in yards Sunday and surprisingly leads the unit through three games with 80 yards (26.7 YPG), including catches of 27 and 39 yards. Unfortunately, he's third on the depth chart, has just three catches, and the Texans rotate three tight ends, meaning he's an unreliable fantasy play. Additionally, quarterback Deshaun Watson's targets heavily skew to DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller, whose 52 combined targets are more than the rest of the pass catchers on the roster put together.
Thomas (hip) will play in Sunday's game versus the Giants.
The rookie sixth-round pick has been targeted five times over the first two games but hauled in just one pass for 27 yards. As the No. 3 tight end in Houston, Thomas isn't a worthy fantasy play.
Thomas was listed on Friday's injury report as a limited participant and is questionable to play Week 3 against the Giants.
Thomas was in full health Wednesday and Thursday before landing as questionable to play Sunday. If he's unable to play or is limited, Ryan Griffin and Jordan Akins will get extra snaps. All three tight ends have been targeted in each of the first two weeks, but the position group as a whole has not been featured like the wideouts have been.
Thomas was targeted three times, but didn't catch any of them in Sunday's 20-17 loss to the Titans in Week 2.
The Texans are using all three of their tight ends, so Thomas has to share playing time with Ryan Griffin and Jordan Akins. All three have received targets in both of the first two games, and at this point there's no clear leader in terms of targets. Griffin leads with six followed by Thomas (five) and Akins (four).
Thomas caught one of two targets for 27 yards in Sunday's 27-20 loss to the Patriots in Week 1.
Thomas is billed as a blocking tight end, but he had the Texans' third-most receiving yards in Sunday's loss. He showed nice athleticism in getting past New England safety Patrick Chung on a 27-yard reception up the left sideline. Thomas and fellow rookie Jordan Akins accounted for all of the tight end receptions while starter Ryan Griffin was shut out on five targets. We'll be looking to see if the TE depth chart changes based on Week 1, in which Griffin and quarterback Deshaun Watson were clearly out of sync.
Thomas showcased his size advantage over defensive backs during Wednesday's practice, but the Texans regard the tight end as a development prospect, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle reports.
The phrase "development prospect" suggests a limited role on offense for the 6-foot-5, 280-pound Thomas, who is the biggest tight end on the roster. At that size, he should be snatching passes over smaller cornerbacks. The real question is whether the former wide receiver can learn to be an in-line blocker. "He's really, the first few days here, he's actually done a decent job blocking relative to being a young player - better than I thought he would do. I think if he can keep improving in that area, he's good in the passing game, I really like what we've got there," said head coach Bill O'Brien.