Adalius Thomas took the stand in his own defense today, in the wake of LatePlayerGate, and explained that he took the steps he thought were necessary in this kind of circumstance. And he doesn't understand why that wasn't not enough.
"There's one thing about Mother Nature -- You can't control that," Thomas said. You can't run people over getting to work. There's nothing to apologize about. I wasn't trying to be late. I don't know what to say. You leave home, there are people there, cars sitting in the road, you're sitting there, what are you gonna do? It's not the Jetsons. I can't jump up and fly. What am I supposed to do?"
He was asked too if this could provide motivation, and gave the same answers he did after being de-activated for the Titans game.
"Motivation is for kindergartners," he said. "I'm not a kindergartner. Sending somebody home, that's like, 'You're expelled until you come back and make good grades.' Get that (bleep) out of here. It's ridiculous. ... I don't know, teaching tool? I don't know. I can't figure out what Bill thinks or knows."
So I pulled Thomas aside after the masses left, and asked him if he felt like this was done to publicly embarrass the players in question, and whether he felt the burn of being the martyr twice now.
"It's not like it was just me," Thomas told me. "I don't try to figure it out. I really don't. I could care less what the reason is. I seek to understand, not to be understood. I'm done with all the phonetics, trying to figure it out. I'm really done with that. Whatever I'm asked to do, I'm gonna do."
So then I asked if he felt like he was being treated like an adult.
"I don't know," he continued. "It's not up to me. It's his team, he does what he wants to do with it. So he takes the credit for it, he takes the blame for it, I guess that's how it goes. And if you do that, you're going to do things your way. This is his way."
Thomas did explain that arrived less than 10 minutes late, by himself, and was notified by Belichick that he was to go home. He wanted to clear the air on that, and made a phone call, he said, "to be professional" and let people know he was stuck and was going to be late.
But he said over and over again, that he's "dumbfounded" by the events of yesterday.
"I mean, I could've been in a ditch," he said. "They really don't give a damn. Hey, as long as you aren't in that meeting, they really don't give a (bleep)."