Each week a Bombers player visits with Ed Tait of bluebombers.com to reminisce about a particular game, or games, that is most memorable for them in their careers in high school, college or professional careers.
Jake Thomas background:
- Thomas is currently the longest-serving member of the Blue Bombers, having been selected in the fourth round, 29th overall, of the 2012 CFL Draft.
- He posted career-high totals in both tackles (22) and sacks (5), dressing for all 18 regular season and three playoff games. He signed a one-year contract extension in January of 2020.
- Thomas finished second in the AUS conference with nine sacks in his final year with the Acadia Axemen. He played for Team Canada at the 2011 IFAF World Championships in Austria.
The Grey Cup win last November tops everything. But in my first year, the first home game of 2012 – which was Week 5 for us because we started on the road and went 0-4 – was my first real meaningful playing time.
We had started out with four straight road games because the new stadium was supposed to be done, but wasn’t. I remember getting picked up at the airport the first time and getting driven by IG Field at the time and thinking, ‘This is supposed to be done?’ It was a long ways away yet.
I remember having no clue if I was going to make the team or not. LaPo (Paul LaPolice) was the head coach then and we had four days or so after training camp ended before we knew officially if we were on the team or not. That’s when we used to stay at Canad Inns at Polo Park and the way they got a hold of you then was by calling the hotel room. For four days I only left the room for two hours. They never tell you if you make the team, they tell you otherwise.
Just making the team stood out to me.
At the very end of the game I forced a fumble on Steven Jyles that helped preserve the win. Any time you join a new team you always have to find a way to prove yourself. That was my play, the play where I proved to all the guys on the team that I somewhat belonged.
Looking back now, if you had asked me in 2012 that I would be playing until 2020 I would have called you crazy. I’ve definitely been very lucky and very fortunate… coaches have always given me the chance to go prove myself. I’m definitely missing that chance to try and go out there and try and prove something new.
The wins didn’t work out for us in my first year, but we had such a great leadership group in the defensive line room. Bryant Turner, Alex Hall, Jason Vega… they all took me under their wing and showed me what it took to be a pro.
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