Former Kansas City Chiefs DB and current coach Emmitt Thomas has been inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.
Thomas was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2008 after entering the Chiefs Hall of Fame in ’86 following an illustrious 13-year playing career with Kansas City. He played in 181 regular season games, the eighth-highest total in club annals. He intercepted a Chiefs record 58 passes, a mark that ranks 10th on the NFL’s all-time list and is also the fourth-highest NFL total by a pure cornerback. Thomas holds the Kansas City club record with 938 interception return yards and also returned five interceptions for touchdowns, tying for the second-highest total in franchise history. He led the AFL with nine picks in ’69 and paced the NFL with a team-record 12 interceptions in ’74, just two shy of the league’s single-season mark.
Thomas originally joined the Chiefs as an undrafted free agent from Bishop College in ’66 where he played quarterback and wide receiver. He has spent over 30 seasons in the NFL coaching ranks with seven different teams and enters his second campaign as the Chiefs defensive backs coach in 2011.
A well deserved honor for Thomas, who has had an incredible career both on the field and on the sidelines. Think about it, it’s not often that a Hall of Fame player has a long career coaching at the NFL level. It happens, but it’s important to remember how rare a talent like Thomas is and how lucky the Chiefs were to et him after the Atlanta Falcons let him go.
Speaking of rare, how often does a team have success starting two rookies at safety? That’s exactly what the Chiefs did this past season with Eric Berry and Kendrick Lewis thanks in large part to the work Thomas did with the young defensive backs. There is also the step that both Brandon Flowers and Brandon Carr took this season.
Congrats, coach Thomas!