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Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Was suspension enough for Ta'amu?

By Jamison Hensley

The Steelers took action with Alameda Ta'amu after his DUI apprehension early Sunday morning, suspending the rookie nose tackle for two games without pay. But was this penalty harsh enough?

Ta'amu faces 15 criminal charges, which include felony fleeing police, aggravated assault and aggravated assault by vehicle, as well as misdemeanor accident causing damage, resisting arrest, escape and DUI.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Mark Kaboly made the case for cutting Ta'amu because of this incident. This was more than an out-of-character DUI arrest. He also made the argument for keeping the fourth-round pick, making the point that this was the first time he has messed up and he's not a bad character player (his father is a former pastor).

My take is you can't release a player after one strike, even though his actions were highly unacceptable. It's hard to field an NFL team if you didn't give second chances to players. But the Steelers could have handed out a longer suspension given the extreme nature of the incident.

"We deem his actions a detriment to our efforts and we are treating it as such," coach Mike Tomlin said, via 105.9 the X in Pittsburgh. "The other ramifications and so forth of this situation that I am not at liberty to discuss at this time, but we thought it was very important that we act and act quickly in terms of addressing this and we can focus our efforts on the men that are playing and getting ready to meet this week's challenge.

"Obviously it's a disturbing incident, one that we take seriously as members of this community and the organization which we are."

Ta'amu is the third-string nose tackle behind Casey Hampton and Steve McLendonand has yet to appear in a game. He will lose $45,882 as the result of the suspension.