If there was any doubt that All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas of Orange wants out of Seattle, when he sat out of two Seattle Seahawks practices and was late for Saturday’s usual walkthrough should be convincing enough.

The absences were unexcused and Earl is expecting some sort of a fine for his actions. Many close to the NFL also expect him to be fined—perhaps quite heavily.

Rumors on Saturday were that Head Coach Pete Carroll was considering not playing Earl Sunday against the Cowboys.

What a mistake that would have been. Seattle played its best game of the young season with a convincing 24-13 for its 10th straight home opener win.

Thomas played one of the best games of his career with two interceptions, the last one coming late in the fourth quarter, halting a Dallas drive at Seattle’s 15-yardline.

After his second pick, Earl stood in front of the Dallas bench and took a bow, which probably meant “you should have traded for me earlier,” or “I’m ready to work for you coaches.” One way or the other, it cost Seattle a 15-yard penalty.

Prior to Sunday’s game, ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Chris Mortenson reported that the Kansas City Chiefs also “are interested to some degree in trading for Thomas.”

Although the Chiefs have the hottest National Football League quarterback in Patrick Mahomes, who has thrown a league record 13 touchdown passes in Kansas City’s three victories this season, their defense is one step above horrific and certainly could use some help.

In the three games so far this season, the Chiefs’ defense has surrendered more than 400 yards of offense and an average of more than 30 points per game to all three teams. They merely are out-scoring their opponents, but this will not get them through the playoffs, if they continue to remain sizzling hot.

Earl’s brilliant performance Sunday not only should make several teams take notice, but it also should help Seattle get more for him in the trade.

Thomas talked to the media after the game Sunday and hinted that the Cowboys’ coaches asked him during warmups if he was “ready for the trade tomorrow,” according to the Seattle Times.

Last season the Seahawks gave up second and third-round draft picks to Houston for Duane Brown, who also was holding out for a contract extension, and would like to at least get that for Earl.

If Thomas opts for free agency at the end of the season, Seattle would be awarded a third-round compensatory pick.

Earl was asked by a reporter if he was hopeful that a trade might happen and if he had a preference to whom. “I love Seattle, my family is here,” Thomas replied. “I’m hopeful that these guys will call my agent and work something out. I want to be taken care of.”

Sunday was not kind to either of the Texas franchises as the Houston Texans played even worse than Dallas, losing to the New York Giants 27-22 in a game that was not nearly as close as the final score indicated. The Texans scored a touchdown with one second left in the game.

For the third straight week the Houston Chronicle graded the team with an F-minus with Head Coach Bill O’Brien getting the same evaluation, along with the offensive line. Offensive tackle Julie’n Davenport was flagged five times with one not counting because of off-setting penalties.

Both Houston and Dallas suffered the same maladies—they couldn’t get started offensively until they were at least two touchdowns behind. The Giants led at halftime 20-6 over Houston, while Dallas trailed Seattle 17-3 at the intermission.

Houston and the Cowboys did have a few good individual performances with J.J. Watt having his best game since 2015 by sacking Giants’ stellar quarterback Eli Manning three times and recording four tackles for losses. Ezekiel Elliott gained 127 yards on 16 carries and also caught three passes from Dak Prescott.

On ESPN’s “First Take” Monday morning it was decided that the Cowboys are no good, poorly coached and have no bona fide receiving corps. They would be much better if they brought Dez Bryant back. They both were quick to agree that Earl Thomas is the best free safety in the NFL.

But if things don’t improve and turn around for both Texas franchises, O’Brien and Jason Garrett may not see Christmas as head coaches.

And Earl Thomas should be wearing a different uniform in December.

KWICKIES…There weren’t many changes in the top 10 of this week’s Associated Press Top 25 College Football Poll. With Alabama still a clear-cut choice over No. 2 Georgia. But there are five new teams near the bottom of the poll with No. 17 Kentucky leading the way followed closely by the surging Texas Longhorns at No. 18, No. 22 Duke, No. 24 California and No. 25 Texas Tech.

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees became the NFL’s career leader in completed passes as he led his team to a 43-37 overtime win against the Falcons in Atlanta Sunday. His 14th completion broke the record of 6,300 career completions set by Hall of Famer Brett Favre.

The Houston Astros moved closer to winning the AL West Division championship with a 6-2 victory for a three-game sweep over the LA Angels Sunday in the final regular-season game at Minute Maid Park. The Astros traveled to Toronto for a three-game series that began Monday night and then move on to Baltimore for the final four regular-season games against the Orioles. The toughest chore Sunday for manager A.J. Hinch will be deciding who will play on the 25-man playoff roster.

Detroit Lions new head coach Matt Patricia will always remember his first coaching victory because it was against his mentor Bill Belichick. The Lions virtually outclassed the New England Patriots 26-10 Sunday night before a nationally televised crowd.

Old Dominion (1-3), a four-touchdown underdog to then-No. 13 Virginia Tech, upset the Hokies 49-35 Saturday for their first win over a top-25 team since 2009 when its football program restarted.

Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes, who set an NFL record with his 13 touchdowns in the first three games, is the first quarterback drafted by the Chiefs since 1987 when they drafted Todd Blackledge.

Houston Manvel has lost two games this season, but scored 97 points in the two setbacks. Manvel lost to Crosby 49-47 and Fort Bend Marshall 51-50 and is still regarded as one of the top Class 5A teams in the Houston area.

JUST BETWEEN US…It took five years but Tiger Woods has finally won a golf tournament, leading in all four rounds of last weekend’s Tour Championship in Atlanta, firing rounds of 65-68-65-71—269 and winning by two strokes. Although Justin Rose won the $10 million FedEx money, Tiger had the crowd watching his every move. When he reached the 72nd hole, it looked like a stampede of fans sprinting to get a good view of the 18th hole. Tiger worked really hard the past couple of years re-shaping his game and it has paid off.