Browns tackle Joe Thomas took every snap deep into an eleventh year before an injury ended what would become his last season. On his podcast, The ThomaHawk Show, Thomas explains that the decision was driven by his body’s inability to continue to absorb the grind.
“As a competitor, you always think that you can still do it, but there a point in your career that you get to that crossroads and you say I just can’t do it anymore, I just don’t have it in my body,” Thomas said. “My mind is good, but my body is not willing, and I think that’s where I am.”
Thomas said that he has a knee that simply won’t allow him to continue to practice and play.
“For me, looking down the barrel of a knee replacement, I think that definitely becomes a decision where you’re like, ‘Hey, this football has been amazing, it’s been more than I could ever have expected, but you have to take other things into consideration if you’re deciding if you’re going to be able to play football anymore,'” Thomas said. “The last two to three years of my career it’s been almost impossible for me to practice.”
And so Thomas will be moving on. The sure-fire Hall of Famer never played in a playoff game, and only one of his teams had a record above .500.
Just imagine how much worse the Browns would have been over the last decade without him.