Earl “Freakin” Thomas
One of the youngest players eligible for the 2010 NFL Draft, Thomas is also one of the most debatable. A collegiate strong safety, he has shown the man coverage skills to make a successful move to cornerback, as some teams do not feel that his frame is suited to play strong safety at the next level.
Here’s what they’re saying about Earl Thomas – “The Free Safety” in 2011.
It is interesting that Thomas is the first Seattle player to be named to the Pro Bowl since the 2008 season.
Through the first 15 games for the Seahawks in 2011, Thomas has 92 tackles, 2 interceptions 6 pass deflections and 2 fumble recoveries.
His solid play down the stretch was one of the reasons that Seattle got back in the playoff race after a horrid start.
You know that he is respected around the league, as Thomas was not in the top 3 in fan voting at his position, which means that the players and coaches from the NFC put him on their ballots.
Seahawks’ defensive coordinator Gus Bradley recently stated about Thomas, “I know Earl hasn’t had the picks, but he is playing better. He’s playing more disciplined football for us.”
Thomas is only a 2nd year player and last season he set the Seahawks’ record for most INT by a rookie (5).
This season he has 2 INT, but knows there is much more to playing the safety position than just intercepting passes.
He stated, “My whole mindset is just to make everybody on the defense better. My better ways might not be seen by everybody out there, but everybody on the team knows. So me playing in the box I haven’t been able to roam as much. But it hasn’t really affected me. I just try to do better in other areas. Like get more tackles.”
There is a chance that Thomas will be joined by another Seattle player in the Pro Bowl, as the team has 5 alternates.
One of the alternates, who I think was snubbed, was RB Marshawn Lynch, who had a stellar run in his last eleven games.
Browner, Chancellor, and Robinson are all first alternates while Ryan is the 3rd alternate.