One of the final images we saw of Earl Thomas suited up to play in a Seattle Seahawks uniform was him being carted off the field after breaking his leg against the Arizona Cardinals. Of course, what made all the headlines was his flipping off of the Seahawks sideline, an obvious reference to the drama surrounding the team not giving him the contract extension he desired. He held out up until the 2018 regular season started, and you know the rest of the story from there.
As expected, the legendary free safety went elsewhere in free agency, signing a four-year, $55 million ($35 million guaranteed) contract with the Baltimore Ravens. If you were ever curious as to whom Thomas’ middle finger salute was intended for, Earl has finally provided the answer to NBC’s Peter King.
“A lot of frustration that day,” Thomas said. “I was in a battle with the team, and I chose to play, and I was betting on myself. So when it happened, it just added to my frustration. I did what I did, and I saw Pete Carroll, and I just was like, ‘You won. You won.’ Just a very disappointing day.”
So that’s the end of that chapter. We wish the separation between the Seahawks and the last link to the Legion of Boom would not have looked like this, but it did, and we move on.
On another note, I doubt many had forecast the Ravens as Thomas’ new team, and as it turns out, it looks as if Earl was on the cusp of signing with the Kansas City Chiefs before Baltimore laid down the best offer of them all.
“I thought I was going to go to Kansas City on, like, a two-year deal, one-year deal,” Thomas said in a Ravens.com interview. “I was just going to bet on myself and hit the market again. Then my agents called me, David Mulugheta and Andrew Kessler. I talked to them on the phone, and they said that, ‘Baltimore has a megadeal for you.” I said, ‘Hell yeah! That’s where I’m going.’”
Barring something crazy happening, Earl will return to Seattle for a regular season game between the Ravens and Seahawks. Hopefully any embrace between Carroll and ETIII will not involve obscene gestures.