Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas left last night’s game in the second quarter after breaking his leg in a collision with teammate Kam Chancellor. Head coach Pete Carroll said after the game that Thomas will be out at least six weeks, and Thomas himself was considering retirement while the game was still going on.
After being taken into the locker room for treatment, Thomas tweeted while his teammates were still on the field:
After the game, Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman told reporters that Thomas was in good spirits, and also provided a revealing look into the life of an NFL player (via ESPN):
“All of us consider retirement just about every game,” Sherman continued. “And when you get an injury like that, a lot of stuff goes through your mind.”
My mind goes back to Luke Kuechly, and the juxtaposition between his panicked tears and the smiley thumbs up he showed us a day later. Those tears and Thomas’s tweet are a reminder of the dissonance that exists between what we usually see—an injured player getting carted off the field without incident and then presenting a brave public face a day later—and the actual fear and anxiety that players go through after suffering a catastrophic injury. It feels weird to say I’m thankful that Thomas decided to tweet from the locker room last night, but it’s always good for us as fans to remember what it actually feels like to play football.