Houston Texans wide receiver Demaryius Thomas hasn't been shy about opening up on his former team, even after it celebrated his return with a banner outside the stadium and pregame scoreboard tribute prior to Sunday's game.
"It was so tough," Thomas said of the deal at the trade deadline. "Even leading up to the Kansas City game (Oct. 28) it was tough, because that one day, I didn't say anything to anybody. I walk into the job and Vance Joseph walks up to me and says, 'Don't listen to the trade talks, it's not true.'
"Before the season started, the trade talk was still going, and nobody said anything to me. Why come to me Monday when it's the same talk? When he said that to me, I said, 'How is it not true? My agent (Todd France) called me today and said Elway wanted a fifth-round pick for me.'"
Thomas, who is a five-time Pro Bowl selection, also said the Broncos weren't on the level in regard to his future with the team.
"So, we're telling stories to each other now? I thought we were going to be men about this. Leading up to the Kansas City game, that's when this all started -- the emotional everything, because I knew it was something. I knew something was going to happen, but I still had to grind it out, play their game and get through it, because I didn't know.
"I played the game like I was going to be here, but I didn't know. Listening to that from him, and then another couple coaches coming up to me and saying, 'Oh yeah, it's all fake.' Then it really happens, it's like, 'Man, it is what it is.'"
Thomas wouldn't leave it at that, however, as he took aim at rumors he heard.
"I heard they were saying that Vance was saying something, and Elway was saying something. I did so much for this organization and never had nothing bad to say about anybody -- none of the players I played with. I just did my job and kept it as professional as I could. For you all to say that I was one of the reasons that the offense wasn't going, and say this and that, man, that hurt."
Thomas, who was the longest tenured member of the Broncos, was second on the team in receptions (36) and receiving yards (402) and tied for the club lead in receiving touchdowns (three) at the time of the trade.
The 30-year-old caught three passes for 61 yards in the Texans' 19-17 win over the Broncos on Sunday. Thomas wasn't heavily involved -- he caught all three targets -- but his early 31-yard reception helped set up Houston's first touchdown on its initial drive and got some early jitters out of the way.