It was recently discovered that he did in fact suffer a partial tear of his ACL, his third such injury in the last seven years, and underwent surgery to repair the tear on Tuesday. Thomas has not played in a game, regular or preseason, since tearing his ACL in a preseason game against the Chicago Bears last August. He reinjured his knee on July 29th.
The recovery is expected to take at least six months, which is a lot longer than originally thought. Of course, the Giants, and Thomas, believed it was just an aggravation of the old injury and would heal with rehabilitation. The Giants, however, put Thomas on season-ending injured reserve.
With the news that Thomas has suffered his third tear of his ACL his future with the Giants and in the NFL is now coming into question. When the Giants re-signed Thomas this past offseason they gave him a four-year, $28 million deal and he is owed $6 million next season with a bonus of $1.5 million. That is an awful lot of money to have tied up in a player who has not played a regular season game since 2010.
Because of his hefty price tag next year, he might be faced with re-negotiating his contract or be faced with getting cut. It would be awfully risky for the Giants to invest that kind of money in a corner who might not be the same player he was before the injuries.
There is also the toll this has taken on Thomas’ body. After another lengthy and difficult rehab process, will his heart be in it anymore? Will he be able to make the same cuts on the football field that he did before the injuries? What kind of permanent damage does Thomas risk if he decides to suit up for the Giants or another team next season and he re-injures himself?
These are all questions I am sure that have been running through Thomas’ head, as well as Giants GM Jerry Reese’s. Thomas seemed poised to finally break out and become an elite corner in this league. Now, his entire career is in doubt. It is an absolute shame but it does serve as a warning tale to all football players that the window of opportunity is a very small one in the NFL.
Hopefully, for Giants fans, Thomas makes a full recovery and his knee comes back stronger than it ever was and Thomas returns to a football field soon.