Ex-Seahawks FS Earl Thomas signs 4-year, $55M deal with Ravens
The first day of 2019 free agency officially brought an end to the Seahawks’ famed Legion of Boom.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Wednesday that Seahawks free safety Earl Thomas intends to sign a four-year, $55 million deal with the Baltimore Ravens. That deal was confirmed by the Ravens at 1 p.m. (PT), the start of the new league year. The Seahawks later posted a tribute video celebrating Thomas’ career in Seattle.
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) March 13, 2019
The 29-year-old All-Pro will reportedly receive $32 million fully guaranteed at signing. Thomas’ average salary of $14.33 million through the first three years of the deal is second only to Washington’s Landon Collins, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
Thomas has spent the entirety of his nine-year NFL career with the Seahawks, and prior to Wednesday was the team’s longest-tenured player. The Texas-native was drafted 14th overall by Seattle in 2010, and since then has recorded 28 career interceptions, 11 forced fumbles, two touchdowns, 67 passes defended, and 684 tackles. During that time, Thomas was a core member of of Seattle’s dominant secondary — also known as the “Legion of Boom” — and accrued numerous accolades. Thomas, who is widely regarded as a future Hall of Famer, is a three-time First-team All-Pro (2012-14), six-time Pro Bowler, and was a part of the Seahawks’ Super Bowl XLVIII-winning roster.
Thomas’ relationship with Seattle hit a snag in early 2018 when, while then entering the final year of his contract, he told ESPN he would feel more comfortable playing out the year with an extension. In June, Thomas announced he would hold out of all team activities until his contract situation was resolved. Thomas ultimately ended his holdout in September, and returned to the team days before the regular season without being granted a new deal.
Thomas recorded three interceptions in four starts in 2018 before suffering a season-ending broken leg in a Week 4 win over the Arizona Cardinals. His now infamous departure — one that included flipping the bird toward Seattle’s sideline as he was being carted off the field — brought an unceremonious end to his time with the Seahawks. However, head coach Pete Carroll called for fans to give the safety some slack.
“This was an earth shattering moment for a kid,” Carroll told 710 ESPN Seattle’s Brock Huard and Mike Salk in October. “He’s trying to play this game he loves and all the sudden this happens again. He knew exactly what had happened to him. He went right to what it’s going to take to get back… but he was very chilled about it on the field. He was an unbelievable stud about handling it. So give him a little slack. This is a very, very difficult moment that most people would never understand what this is about.”
Months later, Thomas’ feelings were rumored to have softened; NFL Network analyst and former Seahawk Will Blackmon told 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny, Dave and Moore Tuesday that Thomas’ could be considering a return to Seattle. While the reunion ultimately didn’t come to fruition, the safety issued a thank you to his former city after the news of his deal with Baltimore.
Thank you Seattle for the love and memories that my family and I will never forget… ❤️☔️
— Earl Thomas (@Earl_Thomas) March 13, 2019