BOURBONNAIS, IL - JULY 30: J.T. Thomas #52 of the Chicago Bears works out during a summer training camp practice at Olivet Nazarene University on July 30, 2011 in Bourbonnais, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Bears'outside linebacker J.T. Thomas was kind enough to take a few minutes out of his busy schedule to talk with Windy City Gridiron. Thomas was the Bears' sixth round draft choice out of West Virginia this year, but missed all of his rookie season due to a back injury (aka: the Lovie Smith redshirt year). For some more information on J.T., you can follow him on twitter @therealjt3 or check out Monday's WCG article about the good works J.T. is doing off the field.
1. WindyCityGridiron: You spent the last week on a road trip from Florida to Chicago stopping at various epilepsy centers. What prompted you to make that trip?
JT Thomas: I was able to get to know a Chicago-area kid named Anthony Grandberry, who has epilepsy, over the past few months. I was able to visit him around Christmas time and we've became good friends. I want to make a road trip like this an annual thing for me, each year focusing on visiting a different group of kids.
2. WCG: When are you going to surprise Anthony? Is anyone else coming with you two to the Super Bowl?
JT: Right now its just me and him, but I'm hoping to find another ticket so I can take his mom as well.
3. WCG: What was it like spending your first season in the NFL on injured reserve?
JT: Man, it was tough. I can't remember the last time I had to spend a year away from football. I got frustrated early on with not playing, but focused on getting healthy and learning as much as I could from the sidelines.
4. WCG: Did the veterans put you through any kind of rookie hazing?
JT: Nothing too bad, we've got a lot of solid vets on the team, so there wasn't anything extreme that we had to do. Just carrying equipment, water, that sort of thing. The worst we had to do was sing a song in front of everyone at camp.
5. WCG: How do you feel heading into the offseason?
JT: I'm 100% healthy and ready to get back out there. I just want to get out there and show that I can contribute and hopefully have a role on this team.
6. WCG: Got to ask; who you're picking for the Super Bowl?
JT: Honestly, I'm just not that into it unless the Bears were playing. I'm excited to go watch it, but mainly looking forward to Anthony getting to experience the Super Bowl. The Pats are a good team, and the Giants are a tough bunch so it should be a good game. I guess if I had to pick, though, I'd say Patriots.
Bonus Question for the WCG community: What does J.T. stand for? Winner gets a moldy mint Dane sent me a while ago that I just found under my fridge (or, you know, nothing, if you'd prefer that).
Thanks for your time, J.T., have a good time at the Super Bowl and keep up the good deeds off the field. Looking forward to seeing you in action next year!