Since shortly after he entered the league in 2010, Earl Thomas’ name has been synonymous with a term used to describe the best of the best in the NFL: All-Pro.
A midseason injury left ET III off postseason honor lists last season for the first time since his rookie year, but NFL.com thinks the overlord of Area 29 will return to the throne in 2018. We’re just halfway through the preseason, but based on what he’s seen and heard NFL.com’s Elliot Harrison is confident that the Seattle Seahawks free safety will mount another All-Pro campaign.
“Pete Carroll gushed about Thomas in training camp, saying he was as fast as he’s seen him since early in his career,” Harrison wrote. “Thomas’ season ended prematurely last year with a broken leg, yet the key here is that the safety didn’t suffer an ACL injury or some kind of ligament tear. Otherwise, we might’ve had to wait until 2018 for Thomas to roam center field the way he has throughout much of his All-Pro career. (Or he might’ve just retired.) His leadership will be needed more than ever in 2017. No, not because of the bickering Seahawks, but rather, the four rookies Seattle is now employing in the defensive backfield.”
Earl has littered the lists of the league’s best for years.
In his second season, the Associated Press named him a second-team All-Pro. He rose to First team in the eyes of AP and Sporting News voters as well as the Pro Football Writers Association in 2012, kicking off a streak of three consecutive years atop all three All-Pro lists. The 2015 season saw him retain that honor in the eyes of Sporting News voters but left off other lists.
Then came last season, when in the midst of a strong campaign the Texas Longhorn great suffered a broken tibia while breaking up a pass in Week 13. That inadvertent collision with the helmet of his hard-hitting teammate, Kam Chancellor, is likely the only thing that has kept Earl from another All-Pro honor.
He’s already looking strong as the season approaches as he looks to start a new string of All-Pro selections.