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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Stevens will play Sunday against Seahawks

8

September

 

   Bucs tight end Jerramy Stevens will play Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks, two days after being found guilty of DUI by a jury in Arizona.

   Coach Jon Gruden confirmed Saturday morning of his plans to use Stevens as the team prepared to board busses for the morning walk-through at QWest Stadium.

   ""Yeah, he's going to play,'' Gruden said. ""He's had some problems in the past and he has to deal with them like a man. But we're trying to help the guy move forward with his life.''

   When asked if Gruden thought he would take some criticism for the decision to play Stevens, he said, ""Well, you've got to take a little heat once in awhile.''

   A Scottsdale, Ariz., jury found Stevens guilty of DUI and he is now facing up to 30 days in jail. Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 2.

   Stevens was arrested in March after officers determined he was driving drunk with a blood-acohol level about four times the legal limit.

  Even if the Bucs don't take Stevens off the field, he could face a suspension from the league. Stevens pleaded guilty to a less charge of reckless driving after he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in 2003 while with the Seahawks.

   But Stevens may not longer be part of the NFL's substance abuse program and team officials are hopeful that will mean some leniency from Commissioner Roger Goodell.

   The NFL is reviewing the case and could act against Stevens as early as next week rather than wait for sentencing.

   Stevens, who missed two days of practice, joined the team Friday and was participating in the walk-through Saturday morning.

   Stevens isn't the only Bucs player under scrutiny. Receiver David Boston also will play against the Seahawks despite an announcement Thursday by the Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney's office that it plans to go forward with DUI changes against him.

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 2:48pm]

    

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