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Thursday, August 20, 2009
Dominik: Bucs working with NFL on Talib situation


Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas

TAMPA, Fla. -- Aqib Talib hasn't been suspended yet, but it sure sounds like that remains a possibility.

General manager Mark Dominik just addressed the media for the first time about Talib's arrest and said the Bucs are working with commissioner Roger Goodell and the league office toward a "resolution." Dominik said Talib's arrest on misdemeanor charges for battery and resisting arrest fall under the league's Personal Conduct Policy, which could make the cornerback subject to a suspension without pay.

 Talib

Talib has had previous incidents -- fighting with a teammate at last year's rookie symposium and an altercation in a June workout in which he swung his helmet and injured defensive back Torrie Cox while he was having an altercation with offensive tackle Donald Penn.

My initial reaction is I'm surprised the Bucs didn't make a pre-emptive strike and suspend Talib on their own. That's what the Panthers did last year when they quickly suspended Steve Smith for two games after an altercation with a teammate in training camp.

But I don't want to say the Bucs are taking the easy way out on this one and waiting for the league to make a decision. They may simply be playing it by the book because there are legal issues still being investigated and the NFL Players Association might protest if a decision is made too quickly.

Dominik did express strong disappointment in Talib.

"Aqib is a very outgoing, outspoken young man," Dominik said. "He certainly needs to mature a lot more. That's what I'll say."

But Dominik also said the team isn't ready to give up on last year's first-round draft pick.

"What we're trying to do is to try to help him. It may not seem like it's worked, but we're going to continue to work with him," Dominik said. "If he needs counseling, we'll get him counseling. We're going to work and try to catch his attention.''

Again, this thing's not over. There will be some sort of discipline coming and my guess is it will come in the next few days. Dominik did say Talib is expected to play in Saturday's preseason game at Jacksonville.

Coach Raheem Morris is scheduled to talk to the media after practice ends in about 45 minutes. We're not yet sure if Talib will talk to the media after practice.