The NFL world was saddened in December when it was learned that former NFL wide receiver Demaryius Thomas had passed away at the age of 33.
Thomas spent the majority of his career with the Denver Broncos, winning Super Bowl 50 in 2016. A five-time Pro Bowler and a two-time All-Pro, Thomas had retired after playing for the New York Jets in 2019. He finished his career as the Broncos’ second-leading receiver of all time.
While with the Broncos, Thomas teamed with Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning and the two had a special bond in their brief time playing together. Manning would go on to say that Thomas was a “special and unique guy,” who was an “incredible player, dependable, accountable, tough, hard-working, and unselfish.”
Now, Manning is honoring Demaryius’ legacy in a tangible way. Along with his wife Ashely, Manning is starting a scholarship at Georgia Tech, where Thomas played college football. The Demaryius A. Thomas Scholarship Endowment will create academic scholarships for Georgia Tech freshmen from Laurens County, Georgia, which Thomas called home as a child.
"Demaryius Thomas was an incredibly talented and unselfish teammate, but more importantly, he was a special person and friend."
— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) April 27, 2022
“Demaryius Thomas was an incredibly talented and unselfish teammate, but more importantly, he was a special person and friend,” Manning said in a press release. “My family and I miss him dearly, and we wanted to honor DT’s memory by partnering the PeyBack Foundation with Georgia Tech to establish the Demaryius A. Thomas Scholarship Endowment.
“An important part of Demaryius’ legacy was the way he inspired the next generation to pursue their dreams with the same perseverance and determination that defined him. Through this scholarship to Georgia Tech, Demaryius will have a lasting impact on deserving youth from his hometown area who can follow in his footsteps and accomplish great things in life.”
The school also announced that it will recognize the scholarship as part of “Demaryius Thomas Day” on August 8. Yellow Jackets football players will wear No. 8 decals during the season to honor him as well.