Veteran cornerback Terrell Thomas has announced his retirement from the NFL, the Giants confirmed today in a press release. Thomas hadn’t been on the Giants’ roster, but he played virtually entire his NFL career with the team, never appearing in a regular season game for another club.
Thomas, who turned 30 last month, was selected in the second round of the 2008 draft, and ultimately appeared in 60 games for the Giants, starting 41 of them. He was sidelined for two years – 2011 and 2012 – after suffering consecutive ACL injuries, the second and third ACL tears of his career. The USC product returned to the field in 2013 and was active in all 16 games for the Giants, making seven starts and logging 588 defensive snaps, but he expressed concern last June that teams were wary about signing him because of his injury history.
Although he eventually got a look from the Seahawks in training camp, Thomas didn’t make the club’s regular season roster, and didn’t catch on with another team during the 2014 season. The veteran corner admits that he thought he would have an active free agency, and would have no trouble finding a home, but says doctors didn’t give the OK on his knee.
“Knowing the game of football, being 29 with three ACL (injuries), I just figured my time is short,” Thomas said. “I can keep chasing a dream, but I was blessed to be able to come back and play that one year (2013). To be able to show my family and fans, my daughter and myself that I worked hard enough to overcome some significant injuries and I became the second player in NFL history to come back from three ACLs. I didn’t play with a brace. I am proud of my accomplishments. I have been through a lot and I overcame it. I am a smart dude and I am not going to chase football. Football is not chasing me. I feel like my time is over. I was blessed enough to play six years in the NFL. I lived my dream, and now it is time for the next chapter of my life.”
For his career, Thomas accumulated 285 total tackles, grabbed 12 interceptions, and defended 46 passes. His best season came in 2010, when he had 101 tackles, five INTs, 21 passes defended, and four forced fumbles.