Bengals release ex-UGA LB Thurman
Dayton Daily News
Published on: 05/19/08
The Cincinnati Bengals released troubled linebacker Odell Thurman today.
"The NFL provided Odell the opportunity to earn his way back onto our team, but we have not seen the right steps taken by him" Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said. "With our offseason work in progress and new talent added at our linebacker position, we've determined it's best to keep moving in a direction that does not include Odell."
Thurman, 24, was not on the Bengals roster in 2006 or 2007, due to an NFL suspension for violations of the league's Substance Abuse Policy. The former University of Georgia player, was reinstated to the Bengals roster by the league on April 21.
Five days later, the Bengals took a linebacker, Keith Rivers, in the first round of the NFL draft.
According to profootballtalk.com, the Bengals cut Thurman in part because he missed last week's voluntary workouts. Thurman was in Georgia last week for his grandmother's funeral.
"He's still in Monticello (Ga.) taking care of things with his family," Safarrah Lawson, one of Thurman's representatives, told Bengals.com in a story posted today. "(Owner) Mike (Brown) and Marvin have been great to him. That's why this is shocking. This is really his last parent that has died."
The Bengals, profootballtalk.com reported, told Thurman to come back to town one day after his grandmother's funeral. Advised that he couldn't make it back, the Bengals said that he either had to return for the workouts or he'd be released.
Thurman, who played collegiately at Georgia, led the Bengals with 148 tackles as a rookie in 2005