Thurmond back from suspension for Seahawks
Walter Thurmond is returning from his four-game suspension just
in time to join the Seattle Seahawks for the postseason, but
without the starting spot he held before the suspension.
Thurmond was activated to Seattle’s roster Friday ahead of
Sunday’s game against St. Louis, adding another talent to Seattle’s
secondary. Thurmond spent the past four weeks working out on his
own and said Friday he was appreciative of his teammates for
understanding he made a mistake.
”I didn’t have to explain anything to anybody. Everyone
understood the situation,” Thurmond said. ”We’re all human, we
all make mistakes and it’s just a great group of guys in here. No
one was judgmental about the situation and If anything more
Thurmond was suspended in late November for violating the
league’s substance-abuse policy. Byron Maxwell has started at
cornerback with Thurmond out and played well enough that he will
continue to be Seattle’s starter Sunday against the Rams.
Thurmond became Seattle’s sixth Seattle player officially
suspended for substance-abuse or performance-enhancing drugs
violations by the league since 2011. That number became seven when
Brandon Browner was suspended for violating the substance-abuse
policy this month.
”Life is about living, you know and learning from your
mistakes. And if you’re not learning from your mistakes then you’re
just going to keep making more mistakes,” Thurmond said. ”I’ve
gone through a lot of stuff in my life and I’ve lived and learned
from those mistakes. It’s just another hiccup in the road and I’m
Seattle waived cornerback Perrish Cox to clear the roster spot
for Thurmond. There was speculation that Thurmond’s addition could
mean a roster move with injured wide receiver Percy Harvin, but
Seattle coach Pete Carroll said Friday there was no move
Thurmond was just getting his chance to be the Seahawks starter
opposite Richard Sherman when his suspension came down. He spent
most of the season as the Seahawks starting nickel defensive back,
with the responsibility to defend slot receivers. When Browner
injured his groin against Atlanta in Week 10, Thurmond took the
spot and had his first career touchdown when he returned an
interception for a TD a week later against Minnesota.
Then the suspension came and Thurmond saw Maxwell play very well
in his place. Maxwell has three interceptions in four games. That
leaves Thurmond’s best chance at getting on the field back in the
role as the nickel cornerback.
”Byron has played great football for us and I think he is on a
rhythm that we want to take out there in a game like this and
there’s no reason to put Walter in that situation after just one
week of practice,” Carroll said. ”But, Walter is ready to play.
If he’s active, he’ll be out there and helping us out.”
Thurmond has started three games this season for Seattle. Even
when he wasn’t starting, Thurmond was a critical member of one of
the NFL’s best secondary units. Thurmond beat out veteran Antoine
Winfield, whom Seattle signed in the offseason, for the nickel
cornerback spot during training camp. He had struggled with
injuries throughout his career but was finally healthy and playing
well ahead of an offseason where he will be a free agent.
One benefit to the suspension for Thurmond was getting healthy.
He said both knees had been bothering him and the four weeks of
rest has him feeling refreshed before the playoffs arrive.
”I feel great right now. I’ve got the freshest legs going into
the playoffs and the advantage is us right now,” Thurmond
Notes: Seattle WR Jermaine Kearse (ankle) will be a game-time
decision for Sunday. He is questionable on the injury report. …
DE Red Bryant (knee) missed the first two days of practice this
week, but practiced Friday and is expected to play.