Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll confirmed that Pro-Bowl safety Earl Thomas will miss the remainder of the NFL season after breaking his left tibia.
Thomas suffered the injury during Sunday's 40-7 win over the Carolina Panthers, meaning he will now be sidelined for the final four regular-season games.
The 27-year-old hurt himself in a collision with team-mate Kam Chancellor while both went for a pass thrown by Cam Newton. Thomas was carted off the field and tweeted shortly thereafter that he was considering retirement.
"He's got a serious recovery that he's got to go through, and it's going to take a while," Carroll told reporters on Monday.
"He was going through at the time the emotional part of dealing with an injury that's a serious setback."
Thomas was a first-round pick of the Seahawks in 2010 and has been selected to the Pro-Bowl in each season from 2011-15.
Without the former Texas star, the Seahawks have a huge void in their secondary. Thomas has 23 interceptions and 56 pass breakups to go with nine forced fumbles and 554 tackles during his career.