THURMAN SUSPENDED FOR FOUR GAMES A league source tells us that Bengals linebacker Odell Thurman has been suspended four games for violation of the NFL's substance abuse policy. The suspension helps to explain the team's surprising decision to select linebacker Ahmad Brooks in the third round of the Supplemental Draft. However, Brooks has had his own history with banned substances; he was once arrested for possession of marijuana, and Jason Cole reported for the Miami Herald last month that Brooks failed two drug tests while at the University of Virginia. As to Thurman, word is that he is making a conscientious effort to rectify the problem. We're told that he wants to comply with the rules and to play football. With that said, a four-game suspension is imposed only after a player has progressed through several levels of the substance abuse program, which means that the problem has been around for a while. Here's hoping that he can get on the right track, because he definitely has the talent to be a force in the NFL. The four-game suspension takes effect after the final preseason game on September 1 at Indianapolis. He'll miss games on September 10 at Kansas City, September 17 at home against the Browns, September 24 at Pittsburgh, and October 1 at home against the Patriots.