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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Raheem Morris: Williams will play but be disciplined internally



Coach Raheem Morris confirmed what we told you earlier, that Mike Williams will play despite his overnight arrest for allegedly driving under the influence, saying Williams will instead be disciplined by the club internally.

After taking all the information into consideration and after consultation with the team's captains, Morris proceeded with the decision to have Williams travel to San Francisco and play on Sunday against the 49ers.

"It’s always a tough decision when you have to make decisions about mistakes made and errors made," Morris said. "You have to make those tough decisions and I have my normal process that I go through."

Morris added that he is "very disappointed about the bad decision that he made to be out late and about the worse decision he made to have a drink and drive."

As for Williams' decision to be out late only hours before he was to report to the team facility at 8 a.m. today, Morris said, "These guys are grown men. You don’t have any rules when you leave your job. . .  It’s supposed to be common sense that you go home and get ready to play a very important football game. A bad decision by an individual player."

When asked whether allowing Williams to play fails to send a message to his young team that mistakes won't be tolerated, Morris said that message has been sent in other ways.

"Our league has a great structure," 

he said. "And they have great examples. If it happens again, they all know the consequences they have to face. They have great examples: Tanard Jackson is no longer here. Jerramy Stevens is no longer here. . . Those guys had to move on. This is the not for long league. It can be taken away very fast."

Then, Morris added a vague statement that, perhaps, suggests that the club is confident Williams won't ultimately face charges.

"This will be a great example for him," Morris said. "Luckily, it wasn’t to the extent where he can get in legal trouble."

Morris didn't elaborate or clarify what he meant, but if Williams' pending urine test comes back without issues, it's possible the case could ultimately be thrown out. Privately, the Bucs are confident that Williams' submission to the urine test is a sign he did not have other substances in his system.

"I didn’t even know that was an allegation," Morris said. "He was cooperative and did everything he could do to help out the police officer."

[Last modified: Friday, November 19, 2010 2:45pm]


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