Will LA Rams face free agent S Earl Thomas in NFC West this year?

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Former Seahawks S Earl Thomas is a free agent once more. Could he resurface in the NFC West?

The LA Rams are set at the safety position this season.  Still, things change in the NFL.  When the Baltimore Ravens entered training camp, the team thought their safety position too. But now that the Ravens have parted ways with veteran safety Earl Thomas, that all changed.

The events that triggered the situation are not new to Thomas.  It became the second time an NFL team “moved on” from the player. The circumstances were no more pleasant this time than the last time when he flipped off his former team’s head coach, Seattle Seahawks Pete Carroll. The scene was surreal, as this video of the event portrays. To this day, he doesn’t regret doing so.

The Ravens encountered that side of Thomas’s personality during an on-field altercation. The team had written an out clause into their contract with him, an option to release Thomas for conduct detrimental to the team.  This not only allows the team to void the four-year, $55 million deal with the player but to pursue reclaiming his salary for this year.  It also places Thomas in search of a new team.

Which team will sign Earl Thomas?

Almost immediately, the news about Thomas’s released a hurricane of speculation and rumors about where he will land next. He is a talented player, and will no doubt draw a great deal of interest from NFL teams who may have lost out in the Jamal Adams sweepstakes.

Don’t look for the Seahawks to pursue Thomas. They are aware of his free agency status, but the team has made no indication of any interest. And I would not expect the Arizona Cardinals to show much interest, as the team is in the process of making young rookie safety Budda Baker the highest-paid safety in the NFL.   So what about the 49ers?

Other teams will pursue signing him

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49ers anyone?

The San Francisco 49ers could be a team that is very interested in signing him. While they have been very active in the free-agent market trying to plug their roster holes decimated by injuries to wide receivers, they most certainly would benefit from an upgrade in their secondary.

The 49ers already have his teammate, Richard Sherman, on their roster at the cornerback position. The 49ers were also reportedly very interested in trading for safety Jamal Adams. While I won’t argue his locker room effect, he could most certainly help the 49ers defense.

Rams may see Thomas in 2020

The Rams may witness Thomas yet in 2020, even if the 49ers pass on pursuing him. After all, the Dallas Cowboys love a good splash move, and they are definitely doing their due diligence already.

Would Thomas be an upgrade for the Cowboys? Perhaps. But not all Cowboys fans are in favor of signing him.  Still, the story is fresh, so it is worth monitoring.

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Other LA Rams 2020 opponents who have been linked to signing Thomas are the New York Jets, who traded away Jamal Adams.  Another team reportedly with real interest are the Philadelphia Eagles, who parted ways with long time safety Malcolm Jenkins this year. Regardless of which team does place the pen to paper, you can be confident that the LA Rams will not be doing so.