The last image we saw of Seattle Seahawks free safety Earl Thomas was not a pleasant one, being carted off the field with a broken leg that has likely ended his 2016 season. On a positive note, Thomas is leading the Pro Bowl vote at free safety so that’s something.
#Seahawks S Earl Thomas (tibia), whose season-ended last night, is the NFC top vote-getter at his position. Hoping to make it 6 straight.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 5, 2016
Since coming into the NFL in 2010 as the 14th overall pick, Thomas has been one of the best safeties in the league, if not the best. This would be his sixth Pro Bowl. With just 11 games this season on his resume and Eric Berry, Landon Collins having great seasons, Thomas may not receive his fourth first team All-Pro selection however.
But Thomas just 27 and as long as his cryptic retirement tweet during the game was just a bout of emotions, he’ll have many more opportunities to get honors such as these ones.
Other Seattle players currently leading the NFC at their positions are Cliff Avril, Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor, and return specialist Tyler Lockett. It would be a long overdue honor for Avril, who has 10 sacks with four games left to go. Avril has broken out in sack totals but has been playing at this type of a level for a long time. He has never been named to the Pro Bowl.
Sherman was snubbed in Pro Bowl voting in 2012 (and probably 2011) but this would be his fourth straight. He has a strong case for his third first team All-Pro honor as well. Chancellor is a four-time Pro Bowl safety, but has missed four games this season. However, the defense is clearly a different beast with and without him, and he may be the most important player on that side of the ball. The Seahawks are 6-2 when he plays this year and just 2-1-1 when he doesn’t. They allow just 14.25 points per game when Chancellor starts compared to 20 ppg when he’s out.
Lockett was a Pro Bowl and All-Pro returner last season as a rookie and though he doesn’t have a touchdown on a return yet this year, not many players do. We have seen him have some electric returns regardless.
I don’t think anyone is being “snubbed” at this point, these are just the leaders at their positions. Players like Jimmy Graham, Russell Wilson, Justin Britt, Doug Baldwin, Bobby Wagner, and KJ Wright very well could get voted to the Pro Bowl as well. There’s still four games left to go to see what happens, but it looks like the Seahawks will be well-represented in the game, and hopefully don’t get the chance to show up because they’re headed to the “other” bowl game.