When Seahawks cornerback Walter Thurmond opted to drop his appeal to a four-game suspension under the substance-abuse policy, an obvious question arose.
Why not wait until after the Saints game to drop the appeal?
With five total regular-season games remaining, Thurmond could have played against the Saints then dropped the appeal, missing the final four regular-season games and being available for all postseason games.
It seemed possible that Thurmond couldn’t have started the process and then pulled the plug at some point in the future, since that device could indeed be used to manipulate a player’s availability for strategic reasons. But the league office advises PFT that a player can drop or withdraw his appeal during the review process, if the player chooses to do so.
This means that Thurmond could have played against the Saints before dropping the appeal. Instead, he’ll be back for the final week of the regular season, and he’ll be available to play the Rams in Week 17.
If the Seahawks get torched by the Saints’ passing game on Monday night, it’s safe to say that the question will be asked, loudly, by Seattle fans.