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Elite WR Includes Vols Among List of Favorites

(Photo via Cory Fravel/247Sports)

A month ago, four-star wide receiver Jayden Thomas picked up an offer from Tennessee. Moving forward, the Vols are one of the main teams he wants to focus on in his recruitment.

Thomas, a 6-foot-2, 200-pound receiver who plays for Pace Academy in Atlanta, Georgia, tweeted out a list of his top teams in his recruitment this weekend, and the Vols made the cut along with several high profile programs. Tennessee is included along with Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Ohio State, Florida, Michigan, Notre Dame, Virginia Tech, North Carolina, and Arkansas.

According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Thomas is the No. 132 overall prospect and No. 26 wide receiver in the 2021 cycle. He already holds over two dozen scholarship offers, but Tennessee and the 10 other schools among his favorites will have most of his attention moving forward.

Thomas is a multi-sport athlete who plays football, basketball, and baseball for Pace Academy. He’s been timed running a 4.63-second 40-yard dash and a 4.21-second shuttle time at a regional camp for Nike’s The Opening in March of 2019, and he showed off a 33.6-inch vertical leap as well.

Though he’s not blazing fast, Thomas is far from slow and has a good initial burst off the snap. He glides down the field and takes long steps to get past defenders. Thomas is very tough and fights for extra yardage on every reception, refusing to go down on initial contact. He has good athleticism and route-running capabilities.

In his junior season, Thomas was nominated for the Atlanta Football Offensive Player of the Year by USA Today High School Sports. He’s one of 10 nominees for the award, and the list includes Vol quarterback signee Harrison Bailey, LSU tight end signee Arik Gilbert, Alabama wide receiver signee Javon Baker, Georgia offensive line signee Broderick Jones, and 2021 Tennessee running back target Cody Brown among others.

In his high school career, Thomas has caught 83 passes for 1,224 yards and eight touchdowns according to MaxPreps. He’s also run for a touchdown and thrown for one on offense. In baseball, Thomas hit .387 in 88 plate appearances in 2019, totaling 29 hits, two home runs, eight doubles, three triples, 17 RBI, and 31 runs scored. He also stole 14 bases and pitched 20.1 innings, earning a 2.75 ERA and striking out 18 batters.

Tennessee currently has six prospects committed to them in their 2021 class, and one of them projects as a wide receiver. Four-star Jordan Mosely from Mobile, Alabama is UT’s lone WR commit in the 2021 class as of now.

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