Brandon Carr to the Dallas Cowboys means Earl Thomas isn’t going there.
Dallas brought in a familiar face in Brandon Carr, signing him to their practice squad. Carr played for “America’s Team” from 2012 to 2016. He spent the last three NFL seasons in the Charm City where he was teammates with Thomas in the 2019 Ravens secondary. Thomas may end up on a team somewhere, but it may not be for his home state Cowboys. What is he to do now?
If Earl Thomas doesn’t end up on the Cowboys, where could he go from here?
There’s a decent chance Thomas remains a free agent for a while. His departure from Baltimore was not great. Showing up to meetings late, getting in fights with teammates and that off-the-field incident we’re not going to get into now involving his brother. No wonder the Super Bowl-contending Ravens decided to part way with him after only one season with the team.
Had he not burnt a bridge, maybe a return to the Seattle Seahawks could be an option? That’s where he made his name and put together a hall-of-fame-caliber career as a prominent member of the Legion of Boom. As for other potential landing spots, let’s look at other branches of the Pete Carroll coaching tree and see if there is a team potentially willing got sign him. Here are three.
The Los Angeles Chargers could be a landing spot for him, as the Bolts’ defensive coordinator Gus Bradley had been Carroll’s defensive coordinator before taking the Jacksonville Jaguars head coaching gig and failing. Though not a great NFL head coach, Bradley is an adept defensive coordinator. Plus, the Chargers are without safety Derwin James for the season, so there you go.
Even though Jacksonville is rebuilding, another Carroll coaching protege in Todd Wash coordinates the Jaguars’ defense for Doug Marrone. When the Jaguars have been good, which was for one season back in 2017, it was because of their defense. In Wash’s scheme, defensive backs are put in spots to make big plays. Perhaps a trek down to Duval County could be in Thomas’ future.
Finally, the third team to keep an eye on might be the Atlanta Falcons. Head coach Dan Quinn is arguably Carroll’s most successful protege. Though he needs to win big this season to keep his job down in Flowery Branch, Quinn was Thomas’ defensive coordinator when the Seahawks went to their two Super Bowls. With limited secondary depth, Thomas could end up a Dirty Bird in 2020.
Thomas probably won’t be a Cowboy, but there is a chance he may play one of his former coaches.