Joe Thomas

Ten-time Pro Bowl left tackle, Joe Thomas – one of five players to earn the honor in each of his first 10 seasons – invites Graham to his Cleveland home for an In Depth conversation. The future Hall of Famer reflects on why he chose to fish with his dad instead of attend the NFL Draft, how he’s already experiencing short-term memory loss and the moment a second-string tackle nearly ended Joe’s inhuman streak of never missing an offensive snap in the NFL. Plus, Joe takes Graham to the Browns’ practice facility for a workout and to Mission BBQ, where the two learn how to prepare its signature brisket dish.

Joe Thomas


Joe Thomas: I was a wild child

Ten-time NFL Pro Bowl lineman Joe Thomas reflects on his wild, early years playing around the house and finding his fun outdoors, and why the family doctor recommended he wear a helmet.

Joe Thomas’ massive puberty growth spurt

Joe Thomas on towering over 7th grade peers on the football field and an incredible, puberty-driven growth spurt in which he added 80 pounds and grew 4 inches in two years.

Joe Thomas: Choosing football over basketball

Joe Thomas explains the personal benefits of playing multiple sports and when recruiting interest from leading college programs shifted from basketball to football.

Joe Thomas on NFL Draft: A soap opera with unpaid actors

Joe Thomas shares the story of his NFL Draft experience – including how the NFL tried to threaten him into attending the draft in New York, so that it could have “actors” for the soap opera.

Joe Thomas: Living childhood dream at Lambeau

Joe Thomas shares stories of his childhood fandom for the Green Bay Packers, including how Packer football was his only opportunity to watch TV and what it was like playing at Lambeau field for the first time.

Joe Thomas to backup: “Get the f@#% outta here!”

Joe Thomas expresses his pride for playing in the NFL for 10 years without ever missing an offensive snap and details a huddle during a blowout against the Steelers in which Thomas’ backup tried to take him out of the game and unintentionally end his consecutive snap streak.

Joe Thomas: Offensive linemen are like mushrooms

Joe Thomas says he enjoys the ambiguity that comes with the life of an elite offensive lineman in the NFL and compares offensive linemen to mushrooms. Thomas also explains why most offensive linemen are motivated by the fear of failure.

Joe Thomas: Losing in NFL is hardest thing in any sport

Joe Thomas shares how he has learned to approach losses in the NFL over the course of 10 seasons with the Cleveland Browns and why losing on Sunday is the hardest thing across any pro sport.

Joe Thomas on the Browns: This could be our year

Joe Thomas shares his eternal optimism that this could be the year he helps bring a Super Bowl to the Cleveland Browns, why he does not want to be traded to a team with a better shot at winning it all and why all NFL roster decisions are made without any emotion attached.

Joe Thomas: Asking wife out in front of her boyfriend

Joe Thomas shares how he asked out his future wife, Annie, right in front of her current college boyfriend and his best pickup line, which didn’t exactly pan out.

Joe Thomas: Why can’t we buy furniture at Walmart?

Joe Thomas on how he pinched pennies to survive on a monthly stipend in college and how that frugality has been challenged in marriage, with a wife responsible for making their house a home.

Joe Thomas: I’m already experiencing memory loss

Joe Thomas says he is already experiencing short-term memory loss and expects more memory loss in the future. Thomas shares his concern for the more life-threatening diseases linked to former NFL players, but says that most of the damage has already been done.

Joe Thomas: When will I retire?

Joe Thomas expresses his pursuit to play beyond his current contract – which expires after the 2018 season – and ponders what career he will pursue after the NFL. Plus, Thomas discusses how many recently retired NFL players feel “in the wilderness” without a sense of purpose.

Joe Thomas: Fire Roger Goodell

Joe Thomas addresses his concerns with Roger Goodell’s most notable player and team punishments and his opinion that Goodell is great for NFL owners but not a good fit in the eyes of NFL players. Plus, Thomas shares why he was rooting for the Patriots to win Super Bowl LI.

Joe Thomas: Johnny Manziel couldn’t commit to the NFL

Joe Thomas highlights what went wrong during Johnny Manziel’s time with the Cleveland Browns and shares a story of when he had to introduce himself to the Brown’s fifth-string QB during a regular season game.

Joe Thomas: JJ Watt is the best defensive player in NFL

Joe Thomas on growing up a stone’s throw from JJ Watt’s hometown of Pewaukee, WI and watching Watt eventually bloom into the top defensive player in the NFL. Thomas also expresses his pride for how the University of Wisconsin is building a reputation for producing exceptional NFL linemen.

Joe Thomas: Watching LeBron at 13

Joe Thomas looks back on his days playing AAU basketball and watching a 13-year-old LeBron James pack a gym with 1,000 people who wanted to watch the young phenom in action.

Joe Thomas dominates brisket prep at Mission BBQ

Joe Thomas – who has an ownership stake at Mission BBQ – takes Graham to one of the Cleveland-area locations to prep a meal and taste test a wide array of menu items.

Joe Thomas: Strength, conditioning and -256 degrees

Joe Thomas takes Graham to the Cleveland Browns practice facility to hit the gym and step inside the cryotherapy chamber, which can drop to -256° F.

Joe Thomas on fake athletes, dreams of punting in NFL

Joe Thomas addresses his love for Twitter, The Bachelor and punting as he drives to the Cleveland Browns practice facility with Graham.