Defensive tackle Solomon Thomas just arrived in the NFL, but he might have already established a record: shortest contract holdout.
On Friday morning, 40 minutes into the 49ers first practice of training camp, general manager John Lynch sent out a tweet announcing Thomas had signed his four-year rookie contract.
The announcement came about 21 hours after the 49ers had officially kicked off training camp with their first-day conditioning test.
The No. 3 overall pick from Stanford didn’t dawdle after signing his deal. Twenty-three minutes after Lynch’s tweet, Thomas was on a side field stretching with conditioning coach Ray Wright. Twenty-four minutes later, Thomas joined practice, although he only took part in individual drills during the final 30 minutes. Head coach Kyle Shanahan said Thomas will be a full participant in Saturday’s session.
Thomas smiled when asked how long it took for him to put on his No. 94 uniform after signing his contract.
It was “pretty quick,” he said. “I just ran down to the locker room and just threw my jersey on real quick. Laced up some new cleats and just got out there.”
Thomas was particularly eager to get going after missing the offseason program. After attending the rookie minicamp in May, he couldn’t practice with the team because Stanford’s semester didn’t end until mid-June.
Thomas is represented by CAA, the same agency that represents Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa, last year’s No. 3 overall pick who didn’t sign until late August. Thomas didn’t take part in negotiations, but said he wasn’t worried he’d have a prolonged holdout.
“I wasn’t concerned at all,” Thomas said. “My agent knew. I trust my agent and I hired him for that reason. He knew how fast I wanted to get out there. He knew that I wanted to be out there with the team. I didn’t want to be by myself for another month.”