ALBANY - The buzzwords around Dave Thomas this
training camp are about battles and survival and threats to his job. As usual,
the veteran cornerback has approached what could be an uncomfortable situation
with his standard professional demeanor.
What transpired this off-season, though, tested
Thomas more forcefully than any challenge that prize rookie Will Allen can make
to his starting job. A harrowing incident barely two weeks before the start of
camp left Thomas on his knees, the barrel of a gun imprinting the back of his
head, wondering if his life was about to end in a Miami parking lot.
"You try to take all the precautions, you
hang around the right people, you go to places you know it's not a
trouble-making type of atmosphere, no matter what, if somebody wants to target
you they will," Thomas said yesterday, speaking publicly about the
frightening altercation for the first time.
Seated on a steep flight of stairs leading down
to the Giants locker room, Thomas following the afternoon workout recounted an
ordeal that he admits shook him badly. He resides in downtown Miami and had just
finished eating at an upscale restaurant not far from his home. As he approached
his 2002 Ford Escalade, Thomas, who stands 6-foot-3, weighs 218 pounds and has
the build of a cruiserweight champion, was suddenly approached by two young men
"Hey man, I want your car," is what
Thomas recalls one of the men saying.
"I was outnumbered - I was like, hey, it's
not that important so I basically cooperated," Thomas said. "They were
big guys. Both of 'em had a piece."
Instructed to get to his knees, Thomas tossed
the keys to the luxury SUV to one of the gunmen and then, on the ground, prayed
that would satisfy his assailants.
"To be honest with you, I was scared, I
didn't know what was going to go on after I gave them my keys," he said.
"With anybody, you're always concerned you give 'em what they want well, do
they want more? Are they scared you might identify them?"
As the two thugs were entering Thomas' truck,
shots rang out. The manager of the restaurant, a casual acquaintance of
Thomas, witnessed what was going down and intervened.
"He busted a couple of rounds off, they
jumped into their car with my keys," Thomas said. "I said OK, I
hear gunshots, let me hit the ground."
No criminal report was made, as the owner of
the restaurant did not want negative publicity. Thomas theorizes that the
expensive rims on the tires of his truck might have made him a target. He called
roadside assistance, had duplicate keys made and still has the truck.
Thomas wants to keep the incident quiet. He
might stave off Allen's challenge or he may not and drop into a reserve role.
Either way, Thomas knows he's been through an ordeal.
NOTICE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C.
Section 107, this material is distributed, without profit, for research or
educational purposes. We do our best, as well, to give credit to the original
news source who published these Guns Save Lives stories out of respect and
appreciation for their willingness to spread the word that Guns Save Lives --
and when an original link is available, we ALWAYS send all our visitors to read
the original article on the original site where it was posted. God Bless the
Americans that publish these stories - for assisting Americans in hearing the
truth about guns saving lives.