Wednesday, August 1, 2012
LB Thomas hopes to move past arrest
By Jeff Dickerson
BOURBONNAIS, Ill. -- The offseason drug arrest of Chicago Bears second-year linebacker J.T. Thomas remains an unsettled legal issue for the club's 2011 sixth-round draft choice. Thomas was arrested and charged with misdemeanor drug possession in February when Morgantown, W. Va., police pulled the linebacker over for driving the wrong way down a one-way street and found less than 15 grams of marijuana.
The officer who pulled him over detected the odor of marijuana, Morgantown Police Chief Ed Preston said at the time of the arrest, and when Thomas retrieved information the officer had requested from the glove box, small plastic bags with marijuana fell out.
While Thomas' legal troubles continue to play out in court, the former West Virginia University standout reported to training camp with the rest of his teammates in late July.
"It’s behind me right now," Thomas said Wednesday. "Right now (there’s) still some ongoing things legally. But it’s behind me. Right now, I’m just looking forward and to the future. Hopefully the picture can be even clearer as the future goes on. But other than that, things are going well with that; progressing right along."
Thomas does not believe the Bears are holding the arrest against him as he attempts to win a job in the preseason. He spent this entire rookie season on injured reserve and is facing stiff competition to earn one of the expected six linebacker spots on the Bears' active 53-man roster.
"I think the organization knows who I am as a player and as a person more than anything,” Thomas said. “It’s just good to still be around and to show them what kind of person I really am. I believe everyone has a good idea of what kind of person I am."
Aside from his legal troubles, Thomas might face league discipline. An NFL spokesperson said on Wednesday the NFL is "monitoring the court proceeding and will review the matter following a final resolution by the court."