There aren’t many free safeties in the NFL better than Earl Thomas. Actually, there aren’t any free safeties in the NFL better than Earl Thomas. On Monday, the Seattle Seahawks showed him just how much they appreciate his top-tier talent.
The Seahawks and Thomas have come to terms on a four-year, $40 million extension that will keep the former first-round pick in Seattle through 2018.
With the team zeroing in on a long-term deal with cornerback Richard Sherman, the Seahawks are set to lock down what has evolved into the best defensive backfield in the NFL. Three of their four starters, including Thomas, Sherman and strong safety Kam Chancellor, have been named to an All-Pro team at some point in their careers, and Byron Maxwell, the assumed other starting cornerback, is coming off a breakout season.
A strong defensive backfield is a key building block of a dynasty.
What Thomas brings to the table is an intimidating presence on the backend of the Seattle defense. While he excels at playing center field and using his speed to break on passes, his biggest impact comes in the run game, where he uses his acceleration to turn his speed into powerful, bone-crushing hits. To top it off, he’s only 25 years old and has shown no signs of slowing down since the Seahawks made him the No. 14 overall pick back in 2010.
Now in Seattle through 2018, Thomas is locked in as the Seahawks’ tone-setter. He’s a vocal leader on the field, and has developed tremendous chemistry with Chancellor, Sherman and the rest of the defense. He’s a huge part of why Seattle is considered the most feared defense in the NFL.
The Seahawks had reason to be worried with Sherman and Thomas nearing the ends of their rookie contracts. With this new deal in place, though, the future looks brighter than ever.
Pete Carroll is building a dynasty. Thomas is smart to strap in for the long haul.