He was then recruited by Port with pick No. 12 in Monday afternoon’s Rookie Draft.
“I’m not here to make the numbers up,” Thomas told reporters on Thursday.
“I had a pretty quiet year this year, it’s well documented, but if you look at my stats before this year, I think they match up with some of the best small forwards in the competition.
“There’s no doubt my best footy is still ahead of me and coming to a new club, I feel re-energised and like I’ve been drafted again.
“If I can work hard on the track, I’ve got no doubt I can squeeze into the best 22 and play some good footy.”
Thomas is one of several new recruits for Port Adelaide this year, who have had an incredibly aggressive off-season, as the club looks to push for a flag in 2018.
The Power recruited Jack Watts, Tom Rockliff and Steven Motlop in the trade and free agency period, while Jack Trengove was signed as a delisted free agent, before Thomas was added via the Rookie Draft.
It is a homecoming of sorts for Thomas, who grew up in Port Lincoln and played 11 reserves matches and six senior games for the Port Adelaide Magpies before he was drafted by the Roos.
“I got here this morning and I kind of had to pinch myself,” he said.
“To look at on to the ground brought back some good memories.”