Moore: Earl Thomas-Hawks reunion is unlikely, but I hope he joins 49ers
Dave Grosby wondered if Seahawks fans would want Earl Thomas back, so he ran a Twitter poll with two possible replies: 1) That ship has sailed; 2) Why not?
The sailing ship got 90 percent of the votes with 10 percent seeming to think an aging and divisive free safety could still help the Seahawks’ defense, apparently forgetting that Quandre Diggs has been doing a great job at that position since he arrived last season.
Diggs, 27, is also four years younger than Thomas and makes half as much money this year with a $5 million base salary. In the five games that he played with the Seahawks last year, the defense produced 16 takeaways, an amazing average of more than three a game. Imagine where that beleaguered Seahawks’ defense, ranked 26th in the league as it was, would have been without those turnovers.
Now we’re left to speculate where Thomas ends up after Baltimore terminated his contract Sunday. Dallas, Houston and San Francisco appear to be the leading candidates. We all remember when Thomas went into the Cowboys’ locker room two years ago and asked Jason Garrett to get him in free agency. That was a head scratcher then but a real possibility now.
I don’t know about Houston, but I hope he plays for the 49ers. Thomas would be all fired up to face the Seahawks twice a season, the team that, in his mind, somehow did him wrong. But looking back, not giving Thomas a contract extension was one of the best decisions GM John Schneider has ever made.
Who knows when or why things turned from “Earl being Earl” to “Earl being nuts” as a disruptive presence in the locker room. He was said to have been easily the most disliked player on the team in Baltimore. He was either late or missed meetings and practice and became a player whose skills were declining, contributing to blown assignments.
Thomas went from odd duck to an outcast who is now in limbo, and I wonder if his craziness will adversely affect his potential to be voted into the Hall of Fame.
In the meantime, as I mentioned, I want to see him in a 49ers uniform and reunited with Richard Sherman in the San Francisco secondary. Both players were terrific here in the Legion of Boom, but they’re in their 30s now, ripe for the picking with Russell Wilson throwing to Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf.
Can veteran savvy make up for waning talent? Perhaps for a little while but I’d guess that the Seahawks will have a big advantage over their future Ring of Honor inductees now.
So let it happen football gods – send Earl Thomas to San Francisco.