Jaguars RB Chris Thompson is coming home. Thompson signed a one-year deal with Jacksonville earlier this month. The Greenville, Florida native spent the first six seasons of his career with the Redskins. Thompson also went to college in Florida(Florida State).
The seven-year veteran is excited about the opportunity to play in front of family and friends.
‘That is one thing that I am super excited about, just to be back in my home state and be a lot closer to what I would say is my fanbase that has been there for years, even back to people that watched me play in high school,” Thompson recently said via a video conference call. “I am super excited about that, and then my family is an hour-and-a-half away now, so they will be able to come and watch me play and be able to spend some more time with me than they have been able to the past seven years. I think it will be good. I missed a lot of time, I missed a lot of holidays, and I will be able to make that time up. I am super excited about that. I just had a daughter, too. She is four months old, so I am happy about that and for my parents to be able to spend some time with her.”
For Thompson, playing in Jacksonville will reunite him with Jaguars offensive coordinator Jay Gruden, who was Thompson’s head coach in Washington from 2014-2019. Thompson believes that Gruden’s belief in him helped his career.
“He is one of the biggest reasons I was able to have the success that I had in Washington and to be able to stick around there,” Thompson said. “The first year he got there, I was on the practice squad. I ended up being cut and put on the practice squad, but he talked to me afterwards for a while after the last preseason game and told me what the situation was. He let me know from day one – [he said] ‘I know this is going to be a hard year for you. You are probably mad and upset at everybody because you got cut, but I want you to come back here because I know the type of player you can be. I know you are going to play a bigger part in the future here with Washington, and I know you will be able to have a great impact on this team and on the players on this team.’ He had that talk with me, and I really appreciated that. That was one reason why I ended up coming back and spending that practice squad year with Washington. It was tough, but having him and knowing that he had my back, it really meant a lot. Throughout this whole process and all my time there in Washington, he believed in me. He gave me every single opportunity that he possibly could. Me coming here to Jacksonville with him being one of, I guess, two guys — with [Tyler] Eifert also — being familiar with his offense. It is good for me and him to be able to help the younger guys be able to grasp this offense and know what Jay is expecting from his playmakers.”
The 29-year-old Thompson is a reliable pass-catcher out of the backfield, and in 2017, Thompson had career-highs in receiving yards(510) and touchdowns(4). He has had over 40 receptions three times in his career, so expect Thompson to continue his pass-catching ways with the Jaguars in 2020.