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Traffic stop costs Robinson

Police picked up safety Damien Robinson on a bad-check warrant early Tuesday after pulling him over for a traffic stop.

Records show that Robinson, 26, was pulled over about 2 a.m. by Tampa police officers who noticed he was driving his 1998 Range Rover the wrong way down Armenia Avenue at W Pine Street.

A check of Robinson's name showed he was wanted for failure to appear on a misdemeanor bad-check charge, Tampa police spokesman Joe Durkin said.

The Associated Press reported the warrant was for a check to the Hillsborough County tax collector to renew a license tag for his automobile.

Robinson, who listed his occupation as "football" on jail records, was booked at 2:34 a.m. and posted $250 bond minutes later. He awaits a court hearing on the matter.

Messages left for Robinson with Bucs officials were not returned Tuesday.

Durkin said the officers who made the arrest had no idea he was a Buc.

"They didn't know he played football until I told them," he said. "He was just another guy."

COMING AND GOING: The Bucs swapped fullbacks Tuesday, signing Charles Kirby to the practice squad and releasing Matt Keller.

Kirby was released Aug. 21 by Kansas City, where he played the last eight weeks of the 1999 season on the practice squad.

Keller signed with the Bucs on Aug. 28 after spending the early part of training camp with the Cardinals.

TURNOVER HEAVEN: Early last season, the defense was playing well but couldn't generate turnovers. Sunday, the Bucs forced four turnovers, and they are plus-4 in giveaway/takeaway ratio, tops in the NFC.

"I think it's confidence and being focused in and seeing the ball come out," secondary coach Herman Edwards said. "A lot of times, interceptions are just seeing the ball come out. If you get a late read on it, it caroms away. If you get a quick read on it, you might get it. We've got a tremendous rush going right now, and you get a lot of overthrows, tipped balls and things of that nature. And then we're catching them."

Coach Tony Dungy said the increase partly is a product of maturation within the system. Good fortune also plays a part, he said. "You have to have the balls bounce the right way."

BACK TO SCHOOL: Returner Aaron Stecker made his NFL debut against the team that cut him last year, and he may have been a little overexuberant on the opening kickoff. The ball sailed about 8 yards deep into the end zone. Stecker ran it out.

"He gets an F in judgment and an A in effort," Dungy joked. "Really, he was one block away from going 108 yards. It didn't surprise me."

Stecker's decision wasn't a disaster. He got the ball to the Bucs 23-yard line.

"Aaron will be fine," Dungy said. "We just felt that we have to be ready to block no matter where it's (kicked)."

_ AMY HERDY, ROGER MILLS,

RICK STROUD

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