Seahawks' Earl Thomas out for year with broken leg

Seattle Seahawks' Earl Thomas leaves the field on a cart after being injured against the Carolina Panthers in the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 4, 2016, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Stephen Brashear)

RENTON, Wash. -- Seahawks' safety Earl Thomas will miss the rest of the 2016 season with a fractured tibia, head coach Pete Carroll confirmed Monday.

Thomas, 27, suffered the injury in the second quarter of Seattle's 40-7 win over the Panthers Sunday night after colliding with teammate Kam Chancellor.

During his Monday news conference from the Virginia Mason Athletic Center in Renton, Carroll said he didn't know whether or not Thomas would require surgery and wouldn't speculate on a timeline for his recovery.

"He's got a serious recovery that he's going to have to go through, and it's going to take a while," Carroll said, adding there would be "no shot" he could return in 2016.

Following the game, Thomas tweeted he was considering retirement, but Carroll said he didn't have any insight into the seventh-year pro's mindset moving forward.

"He seems to be doing OK," Carroll said. "He's handling it. He's responded, and he's doing alright. He's trying to dealing with it right now."

Thomas will be replaced in the lineup by fourth-year pro Steven Terrell, who started for Thomas when the three-time first-team All-Pro missed Seattle's Week 12 loss at Tampa Bay.

"Steve's been with us a long time, so he know how things work around here," Carroll said. "He knows the principles and concepts, and he's really equipped. He's really fast and covers a ton of ground and all that. Very disciplined football player and a really active special teams guy for us for years. So this fits together. We're fortunate to have Steven stepping up."

With Seattle up 10-0 less than five minutes into the second quarter, Thomas broke on a long pass attempt from Panthers quarterback Cam Newton to tight end Greg Olsen. Thomas nearly came up with an interception on the play, but crashed into longtime Legion of Boom teammate Chancellor, who was also in coverage on the play.

After falling to the ground, Thomas attempted get up and walk off the field, but he was unable to put any weight on his left leg and was eventually carried off the field by teammates. is a KOMO News partner. You can read this story at here.

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