Darron Thomas

Darron Thomas
Thomas taking a snap against USC in 2010
No. 12 – Massachusetts Pirates
Position: Quarterback
Personal information
Born: (1990-05-23) May 23, 1990
Houston, Texas
Height: 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Weight: 215 lb (98 kg)
Career information
High school: Aldine (TX)
College: Oregon
Undrafted: 2012
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
Career Arena statistics
Comp. / Att.: 138 / 264
Passing yards: 1,451
TDINT: 27–15
QB rating: 70.44
Rushing TDs: 11
Player stats at ArenaFan.com

Darron Varnell Thomas (born May 23, 1990) is a professional American football quarterback for the Massachusetts Pirates of the National Arena League (NAL). He was the starting quarterback for the University of Oregon football team that reached the 2011 BCS National Championship Game and won the 2012 Rose Bowl.

Early life

Thomas was born in Houston, Texas on May 23, 1990 to Latina Thomas and Darren Waters. Thomas attended Aldine High School in Aldine, Texas.[1] As a freshman at Aldine, Thomas played as a running back.[1] During summer practice before Thomas' sophomore year, Aldine head coach, Bob Jones, had the idea of switching Thomas to quarterback to run his spread offense.[1] Thomas was opposed to the switch, but made it anyway.[1] During his senior season, Thomas verbally committed to Louisiana State University.[2] When the LSU recruiting class for quarterbacks became 3 members, Thomas de-committed.[3]

Thomas committed to the University of Oregon on December 14, 2007,[4] choosing Oregon over scholarships from Florida, LSU, Miami (FL), Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, and Oklahoma State.[5]

US college sports recruiting information for high school athletes
Name Hometown High school / college Height Weight 40 Commit date
Darron Thomas
Aldine, Texas Aldine High School 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 4.52 Dec 14, 2007 
Recruiting star ratings: Scout:   Rivals:   247Sports: N/A    ESPN grade: 80
Overall recruiting rankings: Scout: 15 (QB)   Rivals: 6 (QB), 43 (TX)  ESPN: 17 (ATH)
  • Note: In many cases, Scout, Rivals, 247Sports, and ESPN may conflict in their listings of height and weight.
  • In these cases, the average was taken. ESPN grades are on a 100-point scale.


    College career

    Thomas completed his career at Oregon with a 24–3 record as a starter, leading the Ducks to two consecutive Pac-12 Championships, including appearances in two BCS Bowl games.

    Just months removed from Aldine High in Houston, Thomas came off the bench as a true freshman to lead a stirring second-half rally against Boise State in his first collegiate game.[6] Thomas tossed three touchdown passes in the fourth quarter to rally Oregon from a 24-point deficit. The Ducks lost to Boise State 32–27 but his unexpected debut and impressive performance led many fans to believe he would be the true successor to Dennis Dixon, however, he would continue to backup Jeremiah Masoli for the remainder of the 2008 season.

    After redshirting the 2009 season, Thomas became the starting quarterback for the Ducks in 2010[7] after previous starter Jeremiah Masoli was suspended for the 2010 season and eventually dismissed from the team.

    2011 BCS National Championship

    In his first season as a starter, Thomas threw for 2,881 yards and 30 touchdowns, leading Oregon to a 12–0 regular season record, and an appearance in the 2011 BCS National Championship Game against Auburn. In that game, Thomas threw for 363 yards and two touchdowns, but also threw two interceptions. Auburn would ultimately go on to win 22–19, with a last-second field goal. After the season, Thomas was named as a 2nd Team All-Pac-10 Conference selection at quarterback[8] and the co-recipient of the Skeie’s Award as the team’s most outstanding player.[9]

    2012 Rose Bowl

    During the 2011 season, Thomas threw for 2,761 yards, and a single season school record of 33 touchdowns, leading the Ducks to the 2012 Rose Bowl, in which Thomas threw for 268 yards and 3 touchdowns to propel Oregon to a 45–38 victory over Wisconsin. The Ducks finished the season 12–2 (8–1 Pac-12) with a #4 final season ranking.


    SeasonTeamGPCompAttComp %YardsTDINTRATAttYardsAvgTD

    Professional career

    At the end of his junior season, Thomas surprisingly chose to forgo his senior year to enter the 2012 NFL Draft but was neither drafted nor signed as an undrafted free agent by any NFL team. He was rated the 17th best quarterback in the 2012 Draft by NFLDraftScout.com.[10]

    Pre-draft measurables
    Ht Wt 40-yard dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert jump Broad BP
    6 ft 3 in
    (1.91 m)
    220 lb
    (100 kg)
    4.80 s 1.66 s 2.79 s 4.28 s 7.17 s 36 in
    (0.91 m)
    10 ft 1 in
    (3.07 m)
    14 reps
    All values from NFL Combine[10]

    Calgary Stampeders

    On October 9, 2012, Thomas signed a practice roster agreement with the Calgary Stampeders of the Canadian Football League.[11]

    Lincoln Haymakers

    He would later sign with the Lincoln Haymakers of the Champions Professional Indoor Football League but never played a game for the Haymakers.[12]

    Portland Thunder/Steel

    Thomas was assigned to the Portland Thunder of the Arena Football League on October 10, 2013.[13] Thomas fits in with the ownership's promise of getting players with Oregon ties. Thomas started the first three games of the season for the Thunder before being benched in favor of Danny Southwick. Thomas became the primary back up for the Thunder since losing his starting position.[14] Entering his second season with the Thunder in 2015, Thomas was once again the backup quarterback to Kyle Rowley.[15]

    Thomas participated in the NFL's first Veteran Combine in March 2015.[16] On January 27, 2016, he was named head coach Chris Miller's franchise player in Major League Football.[17] The team was to be called the Oregon Crash but the season never started.[18]

    Thomas was assigned to the Portland Steel on April 25, 2016.[19] He made his only start of the season on May 10, 2016, against the Los Angeles Kiss, completing 25 of 49 passes for 259 yards, 3 touchdowns and 5 interceptions in a 66–27 loss.[20]

    Arizona Rattlers

    On October 28, 2016, Thomas signed with the Arizona Rattlers, who joined the Indoor Football League a week prior. Thomas played in 5 games for the Rattlers in 2017, completing 54 of 93 passes for 576 yards, 13 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He also scored four rushing touchdowns.[21] On July 8, the Rattlers defeated the Sioux Falls Storm in the United Bowl by a score of 50–41.[22]

    Cedar Rapids Titans

    On February 5, 2018, AZ Central Sports columnist Richard Obert reported that Thomas was traded to the Cedar Rapids Titans in exchange for local Arizona product Jordan Gehrke.[23] Thomas was released by the Titans on February 21, 2018.[24]

    Massachusetts Pirates

    On May 17, 2018, Thomas signed with the Massachusetts Pirates of the National Arena League.

    AFL statistics


    Stats from ArenaFan:[25]


    1. 1 2 3 4 Tom Friend (January 7, 2011). "Darron Thomas drives the Ducks". www.espn.go.com. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
    2. Kevin Spain (August 21, 2007). "LSU gets commitment from Texas QB". www.nola.com. NOLA Media Group. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
    3. Andy Staple (January 7, 2011). "How Oregon's main contributors rated as recruits". www.sportsillustrated.com. Time Inc. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
    4. "Darron Thomas". www.rivals.com. Yahoo!. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
    5. "Darron Thomas". www.scout.com. Microsoft. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
    6. "Oregon's Darron Thomas isn't the quarterback you remember from Boise State rally; he's better". The Oregonian. September 2, 2010.
    7. "#1 Darron Thomas Biography". GoDucks.com. Archived from the original on August 22, 2010. Retrieved September 4, 2010.
    8. "PAC-10 FOOTBALL AWARDS AND ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM ANNOUNCED" (PDF). www.uclabruins.com. Pac-10 Conference. December 7, 2010. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
    9. http://www.goducks.com/ViewArticle.dbml?ATCLID=1550474
    10. 1 2 "Darron Thomas". nfldraftscout.com. Retrieved August 29, 2016.
    11. "Four added to practice roster". Stampeders.com. October 9, 2012. Retrieved August 19, 2013.
    12. "Haymakers Sign Former Oregon Ducks QB Darron Thomas". www.oursportscentral.com. OurSports Central. August 21, 2013. Retrieved August 21, 2013.
    13. "Portland Lands Former Oregon QB Darron Thomas". www.oursportscentral.com. OurSports Central. October 11, 2013. Retrieved October 11, 2013.
    14. Aaron Kasinitz (June 30, 2014). "Darron Thomas continues quest to regain success from Oregon days despite several pitfalls". www.oregonlive.com. The Oregonian. Retrieved July 1, 2014.
    15. Steve Brandon (April 28, 2015). "Darron Thomas looks good in brief QB duty for Portland Thunder". www.portlandtribune.com. Portland Tribune. Retrieved April 29, 2015.
    16. Greif, Andrew (March 25, 2015). "After taking another shot at the NFL, former Duck Darron Thomas now waits". oregonlive.com. Retrieved April 26, 2016.
    17. Socotch, Peter (January 28, 2016). "Darron Thomas leaving AFL, teams up with Chris Miller in MLFB". csnnw.com. Archived from the original on April 26, 2016. Retrieved April 26, 2016.
    18. Eggers, Kerry (April 14, 2016). "A thankful Mark Mason, a battling Greg Ballard, and a football league on hold". portlandtribune.com. Archived from the original on April 30, 2016. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
    19. "Steel Sign Former Oregon Quarterback Darron Thomas". arenafan.com. April 25, 2016. Retrieved April 26, 2016.
    20. "Steel Fall Behind Early Against LA KISS, Lose 66-27". arenafootball.com. May 10, 2016. Retrieved December 6, 2016.
    21. "Arizona Rattlers". goifl.com. Archived from the original on June 26, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2017.
    22. Marotta, Vince (July 8, 2017). "Rattlers survive rally from Sioux Falls to capture IFL United Bowl title". arizonasports.com. Archived from the original on August 21, 2017. Retrieved August 20, 2017.
    23. Richard Obert (February 5, 2018). "QB Jordan Gehrke hopes to be next local player to help Arizona Rattlers win title". AZCEntral.com.
    24. "Transactions". goifl.com. Retrieved March 26, 2018.
    25. "Darron Thomas". arenafan.com. Retrieved November 26, 2016.
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