Paul Daugherty
Enquirer columnist files news and observations

Paul Daugherty
Paul Daugherty has been an Enquirer sports columnist since 1994 and has been chronicling Cincinnati sports since 1988. He has covered almost every major sporting event in America, as well as five Summer Olympics. Along the way, he has been named one of the country's top-5 sports columnists four times, and Ohio columnist of the year on seven different occasions. Last year, he was voted 2nd-best sports columnist in the country, by the Associated Press Sports Editors.

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Monday, May 19, 2008

Speculating on Odell's release

Given the patience the Bengals have shown Thurman the past two years, it's illogical they would let him go simply for blowing off three days of voluntary workouts. Especially knowing that the funeral of the grandmother who raised him occurred a day before the workouts began.

There is something else.

Maybe we'll never discover what that is. The proof could come if Thurman decides to file a grievance. Again, the workouts were voluntary. Lots of players didnt attend. None was cut. If Thurman had been adhering to the apparently extensive laundry list of league-ordered requirements to keep his NFL license, so to speak, a grievance just might go in his favor. If he had not, it wouldn't get off the ground. If Thurman decides not to file at all, we'll know he wasn't doing what he'd been asked.

It even appeared as if the Bengals were counting on him. A few weeks ago, they announced Ahmad Brooks would be moving to outside LB, a move interpreted as making room in the middle for Thurman.

Regardless, it's a very sad day for a guy who had the potential to be a very good player and, by extension, make a nice life for himself and his family.


at 11:24 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

All I can say is: there'd better be something else.
You don't show patience with a guy that long to turn around and make an example of him for attending a funeral when voluntary workouts are taking place.

at 11:39 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to Curnette, no grievance will be filed, which means Odell wasn't keeping his end of the bargain. I'm really glad the Enquirer decided to poll the city to get their thoughts on the move. Lots of people bashing the organization when all of the facts aren't out yet. Classy move.

at 11:42 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Odell has had his issues, sure. But it did seem like he got a raw deal from the league on his suspension, while Pacman and others seemed to skate by. And how many issues with Henry did it take for him to get let go? Odell never waved a gun at a cop with his game jersey on.

Marvin just went on record to say he's doing what was asked of him, correct? Maybe you're right, Paul; there's more to this. But, does anyone give the Bengals the benefit of the doubt? Do they deserve it?

The team appears to be a rudderless ship right now.

at 11:48 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is no doubt in my mind that there has to be more to the story.

Surely the bengals aren't THAT stupid, right?

Another chapter in the never ending book of this bengals horror, Proving 'rock bottom' is non-existant.

at 7:03 PM Blogger People Eating Tasty Animals said...


I think a clarification is in order. The three days you refer to are three days of OTA, which involved on-field activities; basically scrimages without tackling. There's a lot more activity going on at PBS in the offseason than just the voluntary and mandatory minicamps.

Starting in Feb. (I believe) the team has organized and supervized training and conditioning, lots of it weightlifting. Yes, it's voluntary, but players have bonus money structured in their contracts for participating. Many players also use this time to study game film and to learn the playbook with coaches and other players. There is no offseason. And there's really not much offseason spent on your own.

I'm guessing if you ask around you'll find that Odell has missed a lot more activities than just the three days of OTA. I bet he's missed most of the training/conditioning sessions, as well as playbook and game film time. And with him being out of the loop for the past two years, that's time he couldn't afford to miss.

Finally, the funeral was last Monday or Tuesday. He wasn't back yet today, and if the Bengals talked to him today, they probably learned he wasn't going to be back tomorrow, either. In fact, he most likely didn't give them any specific timetable as to when he would be back. In the interview you had with his agent tonight, the guy mentioned Odell had interest from a couple of teams, but it sure didn't sound like Odell was ready to go do anything football related for anyone right now or any time soon. For better, worse or indifferent, that's not how the NFL operates. Nor does any other business.

Doc, how much time will/did you get off from the Enquirer and/or WLW when one of your parents dies/died? My dad died in the fall of '06, and my company's policy allowed me three days. My wife works for the City of Columbus, and she had to use vacation days for my dad's funeral.

at 11:57 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps everyone is looking at this from the wrong point-of-view... If Thurman fell off the wagon, and I was his attorney and/or agent and found out about it, this is what I would advise...

1. - Don't show up for voluntary activities....if you show up, and you're tested, then you're toast and will likely never play a down of NFL football again.

2. If the Bengals cut you because you fail to show up....you still can sign on w/another team....and the time it will take to sort all of that out gives you time to get clean and sober again. So when you have to pee in the cup again, you'll (hopefully) pass.

So...roll the dice on step 1, and fall back to step 2 if necessary.

I hope Thurman can turn his life around...I'll still root for him if he does....what he really needs now is everyone's prayers.

at 12:44 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Say what you will about the Bengals/Paul Brown/ Mike Brown's spending habits and choice of some coaches in the 1980s- 1990s....but both the Browns were and are very decent people when it comes to LOYALTY, which is very difficult to find in an organization. They are loyal to coaches, they are loyal to players, they give everyone a 2nd, 3rd, 4th chances. No one can say they aren't generous people.

at 5:18 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd love to see one....just one sportswriter, talk show host, or columnist in this town show some guts and cough up what they know about Thurman instead of "speculating" about what happened.

You guys know, yet won't print it. Instead, you drop vague hints as to what you "think" happened.

I'll respect that media member TONS more than some hack who interviews a stunt man. I tried listening to that garbage on two different occasions yesterday....

Compelling stuff....

at 3:40 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

wonder why with all that money the bengals management apparently didn't feel that maybe chris henry has emotional problems such as anger management..add or adhd and some type of psychological assessment could prove valuable...he's young and sounds as if he has had problems for a while...there are numerous solutions available...why just "dispose " of someone who may benefit form treatment and thusly the bengals would prevail....it wouldn't cost 23 millions doolars or whatever players are paid...sometimes intervention is the best solution!!!

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