Ladies and gentlemen of the press, I thank you for joining me here today. As you know, this has been a trying offseason for the Bengals organization, and for me as a coach as well. Obviously, there has been the absence of our number one receiver, Chad Johnson, whose antics have put this team and its season in jeopardy. His absence was joined by that of T.J. Houshmandzadeh, who has been dissatisfied with his contract situation for a while and clearly saw the front office’s vulnerability due to Chad’s demands as an opportunity for leverage of his own. Yet as damaging as these two selfish, egomaniacal demonstrations have been to our efforts as a team, one man’s manipulative efforts to take advantage of this organization and its devoted fans go beyond the pail of decency. So I come before you today not to answer any questions, but to ask one.
Where does Odell Thurman get off with this “my grandmother is dead and I need a day to grieve” primadonna crap?
Mr. Thurman would have you believe that the whole world revolves around the sad passing of a dearly loved family member. Mr. Thurman, I have known real struggles. Every day I read about disabled youths, abused women, individuals fighting diseases, and I am constantly reminded of it, because they, much like you, won’t stop whining about how unfair life is. Boo hoo, nancy; your grandma died. You think your life is hard? I have to coach a FOOTBALL team! Do you understand how that weighs on me? And yet every day, I put my responsibility to make an exorbitant income doing a job most people would kill to have ahead of my desire to do some normal, less interesting or lucrative job.
The fact that Mr. Thurman would have his grandmother die at a time that would interfere with his participation in a voluntary workout involving several people who will in all likelihood not make the team is another example of the me first attitude that has held him back his entire career.
So from here on out, we’re going to talk about football, and we’re not going to get caught up in trivial matters like the death of a human being and its lingering effects on the living. I said earlier that Mr. Thurman’s grandmother has “been buried for quite a while.” In other words, and as I said via satellite to Odell and his extended family at the funeral, suck it up and get over yourselves, you self serving crybabies.