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NFL draft: Michael Thomas, former Ohio State wide receiver, picked by the New Orleans Saints at No. 47

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Former Ohio State redshirt junior receiver Michael Thomas (3) shakes off Rutgers redshirt freshman cornerback Isaiah Wharton (11) during OSU's 49-7 win on Oct. 24. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead / Photo Editor

Former Ohio State redshirt junior receiver Michael Thomas (3) shakes off Rutgers redshirt freshman cornerback Isaiah Wharton (11) during OSU’s 49-7 win on Oct. 24.
Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo Editor

Former Ohio State standout receiver Michael Thomas became the sixth Buckeye drafted in the 2016 NFL draft, as the New Orleans Saints selected the 6-foot-3 OSU product with the 47th pick.

The nephew to former NFL star Keyshawn Johnson was the primary target in the OSU offense for the past two seasons, pulling in 113 passes over three years, totaling 1,602 yards and 18 touchdowns.

In his first year with the Scarlet and Gray, Thomas saw limited action. However, he did appear in 11 games, but with only three receptions for 22 yards.

After sitting out the 2013 season with a redshirt, Thomas found his place in Urban Meyer’s offense alongside former OSU wideout Devin Smith in 2014. In his second season of action for the Buckeyes, Thomas posted a career best in yards with 799 yards, while also hauling in the longest reception of his collegiate career of 79 yards against Michigan State to tie the game.

His junior campaign in 2015 was a nearly identical year of production from the last season, as he earned 781 yards receiving and nine touchdowns, an equal total from the previous year.

With multiple spectacular receptions throughout his OSU career, one of the most notable coming against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, Thomas drew attention from NFL scouts with his mixture of athleticism and speed.

Thomas also drew rave reviews from Meyer for his ability to control his body, exemplified in the numerous occasions in which he was able to keep his feet inbounds to secure catches.

His numbers at the NFL combine reflected the quickness and athletic ability that he brings to the table. With a 40-yard dash time of 4.55 seconds and a more-than 33-inch vertical, Thomas has the intangibles to produce for any team needing a physical and fast receiver.

The Saints lacked a primary receiver last year, and leaned on Willie Snead for most of the season. Thomas will immediately upgrade the receiving corp.

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