Dallas Cowboys: Kris Richard, Earl Thomas reunion possible?
Could the Dallas Cowboys recent hire of Kris Richard as their new defensive backs coach open the door for All-Pro safety Earl Thomas to come to Dallas?
Following the Dallas Cowboys 21-12 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in Week 16, Seahawks All-Pro safety Earl Thomas followed the Cowboys into their locker room after the game. Thomas was overheard telling head coach Jason Garrett to “come get me“.
Ignoring the fact it’s flat out weird for a player from the opposing team to follow you into your own locker room, Thomas did so after a loss that illuminated the Cowboys from playoff contention. Talk about an awkward situation. And not just for Dallas, but for Seattle as well.
Thomas is under contract with the Seahawks for one more season after signing a five-year, $44.7 million deal in April of 2014. Speculation is that the 28-year old safety wants a new contract in Seattle and could be willing to hold out this offseason for it.
As for him coming to the Cowboys, Thomas clarified later that he loves Seattle and wants to play there. But if the Seahawks aren’t willing to pay him what he feels he is worth, that Dallas would be a desired landing spot. Which makes sense as Thomas is a native Texan, who played at the University of Texas.
And the Cowboys could certainly use his services. Both of their starting safeties, Byron Jones and Jeff Heath, struggled last season. While Thomas racked up 88 total tackles, seven pass defends, two interceptions and a defensive touchdown, and was named to the Pro Bowl and the All-Pro second team.
But adding the six-time Pro Bowler in the prime of his career seems like a pipe dream. And Thomas is still under contract with the Seahawks through 2018. It seems unlikely that they would be willing to let him go.
Last week, the Cowboys hired former Seattle defensive coordinator Kris Richard as their new defensive backs coach and passing game coordinator. And according to The Seattle Times, one of the reasons Richard was let go by the Seahawks could have been due to his tight bond with many key players. And that head coach Pete Carroll might have wanted to change the dynamic of the locker room.
Both Richard and Thomas joined the Seahawks at the very same time, 2010. They clearly have a close relationship. Could that translate to Thomas coming to Dallas soon? Well, it certainly doesn’t hurt his chances.
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But at the end of the day, Earl Thomas wants to be shown appreciation financially. If the Seattle Seahawks do so, he’ll clearly stay with them. So, if the Dallas Cowboys want the All-Pro safety, they’ll have to either trade for him and pay the $8.5 million he is owed in 2018 or hope he hits free agency next offseason and they make him the highest paid safety in the NFL. Neither option sounds like something this current Cowboys front office would ever do.