On August 21, 2020, Earl Thomas got in an altercation with teammate Chuck Clark. It was reported that Thomas punched Clark during practice. It is unknown what the issue was, but apparently Thomas was in the wrong, therefore he was released from the Ravens two days later.
On August 23, 2020, the Ravens released a statement stating “that his (Earl Thomas) behavior adversely affected the Baltimore Ravens”.
Earl Thomas has had an interesting year in Baltimore prior to his release. On May 6, 2020, TMZ reported that Thomas was held at gunpoint by his wife, after she found him and his brother in bed with another women. Subsequently, his wife was arrested the following day.
It has been a bizarre year for Earl Thomas to say the least. He is hoping a fresh start might be what he needs to get back on track. Surprisingly, he is still a Free Agent, and it is unclear if teams are simply not interested or if he is only looking for offers from particular teams. Whatever the case may be, Thomas is still unsigned and is looking for a fresh start with a new team. Thomas obviously has the talent to be on any team in the NFL (he made the Pro Bowl roster last season). It is just a matter if teams feel it is worth it bringing in a player who could potentially be a cancer in the locker room. But there has got to be at least one team out there that would be willing to take a gamble on him. It is clear there are playoff teams out there that could benefit from having his skill set and experience on their team.
Now, let’s take a look at the top 5 landing spots I came up with for Earl Thomas. These 5 teams are teams who need a player of his caliber on their defense, in order to make a run in the playoffs.
The Miami Dolphins are having a pretty good season thus far. The Dolphins are currently in playoff contention and may need to add some pieces to make a serious run. The Dolphins could definitely use a Safety like Earl Thomas. Thomas would provide an instant boost to the Dolphins secondary. I think if Brian Flores is able to set the expectations upfront and get buy in from Thomas, it could be a really good spot for Earl Thomas.
This is an interesting team for Earl Thomas. This team is a young team that may need the experience that Earl Thomas can bring to the table. The Bills have a legitimate shot at making it to the Super Bowl this season. There are some weaknesses on the defensive side and that may be the difference in an AFC Championship game. We all know to beat teams like the Chiefs and the Ravens, you need to have a solid defense. Earl Thomas would provide an upgrade over Micah Hyde, who is having an alright year but hasn’t played like he has in previous years. Bills Head Coach Sean McDermott should be able to deal with Earl Thomas, and I think it helps that McDermott is a players’ coach, but also knows how to hold his players accountable.
The Packers are currently sitting at 6-2 and are in great position to win the NFC North. The Packers seem to have a need at the Safety position. The two starters (Adrian Amos & Darnell Savage) the Packers currently have at that position are both average Safeties at best. Earl Thomas would provide a clear upgrade at that position. The Packers more than likely will have to face some pretty good offenses in the playoffs (Saints, Buccaneers, and/or Seahawks), they will need to be able to defend the passing game. Each one of these teams have a unique way at attacking defenses through the air. The addition of Thomas would provide the experience and skills to be able to help out in that regard. I’m sure Matt LeFleur and Aaron Rodgers would be able to keep Earl Thomas in check.
Yes, that’s right Seahawks are at number 2 on this list. I am not sure what the relationship between Earl Thomas and the Seahawks looks like after the way Thomas left the team. But if they are able to mend the relationship and bring back Earl Thomas, that would obviously help out the Seahawks secondary and the defense as a whole. The Seahawks do have Jamal Adams and Quandre Diggs as their starting Safeties, but if the Seahawks are willing to shuffle these three players around, and are able to have all three on the field at the same time then that would provide a huge boost to this defense. A couple ways the Seahawks could shuffle their secondary is move Jamal Adams to either Nickel Corner or a Hybrid Linebacker position, and have Earl Thomas play the Safety position (which Thomas would be an upgrade over Adams in coverage). Or they could try moving Diggs to a corner position (which there is a need right now and Diggs does have experience playing corner). Those are just some ways the Seahawks could make it work. Bringing Earl Thomas back to Seattle is not as bad as it sounds, plus Earl Thomas knows the scheme well and the Seahawks did get the most out of Thomas when he played for them.
This one makes the most sense considering Earl Thomas played for the University of Texas and this would allow Thomas to play for his home team. So far, Jerry Jones has not expressed any interest in signing Thomas. This season seems like a lost season for the Dallas Cowboys. Once they lost Dak Prescott to a season ending injury, the Cowboys fell apart. It is one thing to want to play for your home team, but is it realistic? Would Earl Thomas thrive in the current environment? Those are all questions that both the Cowboys and Earl Thomas will need to think about before signing. It could either be a really good thing or it can be the polar opposite.
For now, Earl Thomas and his agent will be waiting for the right opportunity. If Thomas wants to play for a contender, he may need to wait it out a little longer until a team desperately needs his service. I know one thing is for certain Earl Thomas will be ready, he has been working out non stop since his release (at least that is what his Instagram suggests). Stay tuned to see where he goes.