Robert Thomas (fullback)

Robert Lee Thomas, IV (born December 1, 1974) is a former American football fullback in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys. He played college football at Henderson State University.

Robert Thomas
No. 59, 44
Personal information
Born: (1974-12-01) December 1, 1974 (age 46)
Jacksonville, Arkansas
Height:6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight:273 lb (124 kg)
Career information
High school:Jacksonville
(Jacksonville, Arkansas)
College:Henderson State
Career history
As player:
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
As coach:
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played:68
Rushing att-yards:50-280
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR
Player stats at

Early yearsEdit

Thomas graduated from Jacksonville High School in Jacksonville, Arkansas, after playing three seasons of football. Back then because of his small size, he played different positions (fullback, tight end, linebacker, defensive end, punter and quarterback).

He attended college at Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, where he became the starting middle linebacker. He closed out his collegiate career as the school's all-time leading tackler with 388 tackles. Among his marks, he recorded 18 tackles in a single game and 129 tackles in a season. He was named the Gulf South Conference Defensive Player of Year in 1995 and earned All-GSC honors in 1995 and 1996.

In 1996, Thomas participated in the NCAA Division II All-Star game and the Snow Bowl (later known as the Cactus Bowl). He also was a finalist for the Harlon Hill Trophy.[1]

In 2004, he was inducted into the Henderson State University Hall of Honor. In 2006, he was inducted into the Jacksonville High School Hall of Fame.

Professional careerEdit

Calgary Stampeders (CFL)Edit

In 1998, he signed as a free agent with the Calgary Stampeders of the CFL, but only played in one pre-season game before being waived.

Dallas CowboysEdit

Thomas was not selected in the 1998 NFL Draft and was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Dallas Cowboys. He made the Cowboys' final roster and spent his time playing mostly on special teams.

In 1999, he was allocated to NFL Europe's Rhein Fire and upon his return he was switched from linebacker to fullback, becoming a starter that same season, after Daryl Johnston suffered a career-ending neck injury.

As a starter, he became a productive player, earning a new three-year contract in 2001. During that season, he would miss the final 11 games after suffering torn ligaments in his left ankle and being placed on the injured reserve list.[2]

On February 19, 2003, Thomas was released because of salary cap considerations.[3] During his time with the Cowboys, he served primarily as Emmitt Smith's lead blocker for four of his five seasons, eventually paving the way as Smith ran for 109 yards on 24 carries, while becoming the NFL's all-time leading rusher versus the Seattle Seahawks on October 27, 2002.

Arena Football LeagueEdit

From 2004 to 2008, he played in the Arena Football League where he broke the Georgia Force’s rushing yds record with 250 yds in a season, and tied their rushing touchdown record with 12. In 2004, his first year with the league, he was named to the All-Rookie team.[4] From 2007 to 2008, he played for the Colorado Crush, where he tied the team's rushing touchdown record (9) and was named to the All-Ironman Team.

Personal lifeEdit

In 2009, Thomas was named an assistant coach for the Arkansas Twisters of the AF2.[5]


  1. ^ "All-Time List of Harlon Hill Trophy Candidates by School". Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  2. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  3. ^ "Transactions". Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  4. ^ "Former Cowboys Fullback Shining In AFL". Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  5. ^ "Twisters Coaching Staff Brings Rings". Our Sports Central. March 9, 2009. Retrieved October 26, 2012.

External linksEdit