Earl Thomas’s strange tenure with the Baltimore Ravens has come to an end, less than 18 months after signing a four-year, $55 million contract in free agency.
On Friday, Thomas was sent home from the Ravens’ facility after a fight with teammate and fellow safety Chuck Clark. The fight was reportedly the result of a miscommunication by Thomas, who attempted to explain the incident on his Instagram, sharing Baltimore’s practice footage in the meantime.
The argument with Clark, which led Thomas to punch him, was the latest in a string of incidents around Thomas’s Ravens career. Last season and throughout the offseason, rumors swirled of teammates being unhappy with his tardiness for meetings, freelancing, and confrontational style, which included another tense argument with a different teammate, defensive tackle Brandon Williams. Baltimore’s leadership council reportedly pushed for the Ravens to move on from Thomas after the latest incident.
The unique part of this Earl Thomas situation is #Ravens player leadership is behind they move. Sources said yesterday they communicated to management they supported a release or trade.— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) August 23, 2020
Baltimore released Thomas “for conduct detrimental to the team,” meaning they were able to void all future guarantees and come after a portion of guaranteed money Thomas had already received. Thomas and the NFLPA are expected to challenge that.
Thomas’s release will become official at noon PST on Sunday. Once official, the Cowboys and 49ers are among the teams expected to pursue the former Seahawks safety.