LISTEN: Expectations From 49ers Training Camp With John Chapman →
placeholder image

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ Solomon Thomas: “I know I’m a good player, and I know I’m here for a reason”

May 29, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Videos are auto-populated by an affiliate. This site has no control over the videos that appear above.
Defensive lineman Solomon Thomas is entering his third season with the San Francisco 49ers and he, like the Niner Faithful, is hoping 2019 is a breakout year. Certain expectations were set for the young defensive player when the 49ers made him the No. 3 overall pick in 2017. Expectations, many would say, he has failed to reach.

The pressure of being such a high draft pick used to weigh on Thomas. Now, he sees his draft spot as a blessing.

"I was drafted third overall for a reason," Thomas told Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area on the 49ers Insider Podcast, "because I'm a good player. It's time I just put all the expectations and pressure out of me, and just worry about me and what I know I can do.

"I know I'm a good player, and I know I'm here for a reason. I know my strengths. I know who I am on the field. I know who I am as a teammate in the locker room."

Thomas seems like a different person this offseason. Despite coming off another statically disappointing season, teammates like fullback Kyle Juszczyk have said Thomas has a renewed energy to him.

"I know what I can do on the field," Thomas said, "and that's what I'm excited about. I'm really confident in myself right now. I'm really confident in my abilities and what I can do, and my potential. I'm just ready to go out there and play as hard as I can, and kind of just show everyone, and show myself how good I can be."

Getting to this point was a difficult journey for Thomas. After dealing with all of the expectations of being the No. 3 overall pick in 2017, he had to deal with family tragedy last year when his sister, Ella, died by suicide that January.

While most would understand how such a loss might impact a player's on-field performance, Thomas isn't willing to use it as an excuse.

"I'm not making an excuse for how I played at all," Thomas explained. "That's on me. I didn't play anything close to how I am or show any kind of spark of who I am on the field. Every day I'll own up to that.

"I hate looking back on it, but it's true; I definitely had a lot of carryover from what I went through with my family in the offseason, losing my sister, just going through the grief process. I really didn't handle it well at first. I just kind of got stuck in a dark hole that I couldn't get out of for a while, and really didn't honor my emotions, or really even tend to them at all."

Thomas finally reached out for help last November and worked on his mental well-being. He feels more confident now about his NFL future and the impact he can make on the football field.

"[Around November is] kind of when I started playing better, when my mind started clearing up, wasn't as clouded, and was able to finally kind of play again," Thomas continued. "I feel like I finished the last six games pretty strong, and finally kind of showed a little bit of who I can be and what I'm going to be in the future."

Thomas is excited about his potential. He is also enthusiastic about the 49ers' potential going forward and feels the team is on the brink of something special.

"I'm excited for this team this year," Thomas said. "We have a lot of hungry guys, a lot of new guys, a lot of guys who have improved themselves year after year. They're kind of getting to that point where they're ready to explode and get off.

"I feel like this team, we've been kind of on that cusp of being a really good team, and we've had some downfalls with injuries and what not. But I feel like this year, we're going to be really special in a lot of ways."

You can listen to the entire interview with Thomas below.

Enjoy this article? Follow us to never miss more!

Powered by


More San Francisco 49ers News

placeholder image

Steve Young: 'Elite' 49ers QB Brock Purdy will only get better

By David Bonilla
Jul 12

Steve Young believes NFL quarterbacks need significant support to succeed, and few have as much talent around them as San Francisco 49ers signal-caller Brock Purdy. Some critics argue that Purdy's success is primarily due to the playmakers around him. However, Young considers...

placeholder image

ESPN: 49ers' George Kittle the NFL's most well-rounded tight end, but not the best

By David Bonilla
Jul 12

George Kittle is coming off his third career season surpassing 1,000 receiving yards. However, simply looking at his statistics doesn't provide a complete picture of what the tight end means to the San Francisco 49ers. Kittle earned Pro Football Focus' highest overall grade...

placeholder image

49ers reporter predicts which six wide receivers make team's 53-man roster

By Marc Adams
Jul 14

It's almost time for NFL training camps to begin. San Francisco 49ers rookies report this coming week, with the veterans reporting the following week. It's a time when camp battles begin heating up and discussions ensue about which players will make the final 53-man roster. One...

placeholder image

CBS Sports picks recent Shanahan call as 49ers' biggest do-over of all-time

By David Bonilla
Jul 13

The San Francisco 49ers have a storied history of success, but certain plays linger in fans' minds as moments they'd want to redo. There is Roger Craig's fumble in the NFC Championship Game on January 20, 1991, preventing the 49ers from becoming the first team to win three...


Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone