I've spoken to some friends, thinking, why the heck isn't Odell Thurman practicing. He's in camp now, but spending his time with Chip Morton and Ray Oliver; the strength and conditioning team.
The first rumor is Thurman dropped weight and wasn't physically ready. Then it was that he was overweight. Neither turned out true as Morton said," He's not overweight." In fact, the only know complaint about the linebacker, physically, is that he's not as "ripped".
Here's a comparative photo (hat tip "Joisey/Beer Run")
Personally, I don't believe Thurman spending his time with the Strength and Conditioning team is a result of being "ripped" or not. Maybe it is, but we've seen plenty of great defensive players that are undersized.
But you can't blame anyone for speculating. After all, we probably won't hear the exact reason for a long time.
This is my Thurman Theory. I think Marvin Lewis is making Thurman understand his actions hurt the team. The 2005 Defensive Rookie of the Year finalist will miss the first four games. Therefore, Lewis believing Thurman embarrassed the team is keeping him from practicing with the team. I don't think it's because he's late. We've seen multiple instances where players, while excused, come to practice late and are allowed to practice with the team. Thurman only missed a few practices and has plenty of time to get in shape and back in the groove.
Since Marvin Lewis joined the team as head coach, he's installed a team first mindset. I think Lewis is punishing Thurman with constant conditioning drills. It's a theory at best, but makes sense to me.
What do you guys think? Am I off base?