Earl Thomas has offered a video as the most positive sign yet he’ll be back for the start of the Seahawks’ 2017 season.
The three-time All-Pro free safety posted this on his Instagram account, three months plus three days after he broke his tibia trying to intercept a pass against Carolina:
Thomas being back running Monday for the first time since his injury backs up Pete Carroll’s optimism when the coach spoke last week at the NFL combine about the possibility of his invaluable defender returning in time for the start of next season.
Carroll said “all indications” are Thomas will recover from the broken shin to be Seattle’s starting free safety again for the 2017 opener in September. Before that, Carroll had not given an estimate for Thomas’ recovery.
Thomas had mused on social media immediately after his injury about possibly retiring, but the Seahawks now see that as an emotional reaction from an emotional player who just sustained his first major injury of his football life.
"I'm coming back to prove I'm the best,” Thomas told ESPN’s Ed Werder last week. “I'm coming back to help my team win a championship."
"Yeah, it was a big shock, you know. It was a big shock to him. He’d never been injured before, like that,” Carroll said last week in Indianapolis. “He’s feeling very competitive about it and he’s going for it. His mentality is strong. And he’s looking forward to getting right."
The coach had the same upbeat forecast last week for Tyler Lockett. The zooming wide receiver and Pro Bowl kick returner broke his tibia and fibula against Arizona on Christmas Eve.
“Both those guys have a really good chance to be there as we kick off the season,” Carroll said.
Now Thomas has provided evidence of that.