Responsible for a few of the most impressive plays in this past Sunday’s 16-10 victory over the Los Angeles Rams, Earl Thomas has been named Defensive Player of the Week for Week 5 in the NFC.
The Seahawks free safety recorded seven tackles and a crucial interception in the game’s fourth quarter, but Thomas’ most impressive stop came on the Rams’ opening possession when he used a Bruce Lee-esque Kung-Fu chop to force Los Angeles running back Todd Gurley to fumble near the goal line. The loose football hit the pylon and landed out of bounds, a play that by rule resulted in a touchback and gave the ball back to the Seahawks.
“I did a great job watching those Bruce Lee movies, and it kind of carried over to the football field,” Thomas said postgame at L.A. Coliseum according to Seahawks.com, of his touchdown-saving, turnover-forcing tackle.
“It’s just fighting and clawing,” he added. “We always talk about, ‘just give us an inch,’ and I saw a chance to strike on the ball.”
It might be hard to believe given the highlight-reel plays 12s see Thomas make on a weekly basis, but the Defensive Player of the Week honor is the first ever for the five-time Pro Bowler and eight-year NFL veteran. Since 2012, however, the trio of Thomas, cornerback Richard Sherman and strong safety Kam Chancellor has now won eight Defensive Player of the Week awards.