SEATTLE -- The Seattle Seahawks have announced their four-year extension with All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas, making him the highest-paid safety in the NFL.
Seattle announced the extension on Tuesday. The deal is worth $40 million over four years and will keep Thomas in a Seahawks uniform through the 2018 season. The extension includes $27.7 million in guaranteed money.
Thomas is a two-time first-team All-Pro selection and regarded as the top safety in the NFL. He was rewarded as such with a deal that is expected to top the contract Jairus Byrd received from New Orleans.
Thomas, 24, is the heart of the defense that led the Seahawks to their first Super Bowl win in January. He has started every game since the Seahawks drafted him 14th overall in the 2010 draft out of Texas, recording 15 interceptions and five forced fumbles.
The Seahawks now can turn their full attention to reaching an extension with cornerback Richard Sherman, who like Thomas has one year remaining on his rookie deal and is expected to end up one of the highest-paid players at his position. There are reports that the Seahawks want to have that deal done before the start of the NFL Draft May 8.
Quarterback Russell Wilson also will need to get paid at some point, but he has two years remaining on his rookie contract and isn't eligible for extension talks until December. Left tackle Russell Okung has two years remaining on his rookie contract as well.
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