Postscripts — Sept. 8 blog

In this edition of "Postscripts," Jon Gruden discusses Jerramy Stevens, David Boston and three rookies that will likely start on Sunday.

Saturday, Sept. 8

The blotter update

Bucs head coach Jon Gruden talked about both Jerramy Stevens and David Boston on Friday before the Bucs left for Seattle.

Stevens, the tight end, was at practice for the first time since Monday. He had been in Arizona for two days to stand trial for a DUI arrest in Scottsdale, Ariz., in March. A jury found Stevens guilty on Friday of three counts of DUI.

Gruden said he had no updates on Stevens' situation.

"We said, the process, rightfully so, is going to run its course and when it was over he would be back here," Gruden said. "And here he is, and it's great to have him back."

But how long will he had him? This is the 11th brush with the law of Stevens' career and, amazingly, the NFL has never suspended him. That will likely change this time, as the NFL is reviewing the case, and given that commissioner Roger Goodell has doled out player suspensions to just about everyone that has been involved in off-the-field incidents this year, Stevens will likely miss some time this year.

Boston will make the trip to Seattle, Gruden said, and he seemed almost surprised anyone would ask such a thing.

"No, all I can say is that David has assured me he is innocent, and I believe him," Gruden said. "I apologize if that makes anybody mad. I believe the man."

That's fine, but tests are tests, and urinalysis tests are usually accurate. It would help tremendously if we knew what Boston had tested positive for. All we know is that he tested for at least one banned substance after his DUI arrest last month in Pinellas Park.

Boston's past will make a difference in whatever suspension the NFL dishes out. Boston served a four-game suspension several years ago for testing for a banned substance (read: steroids). Depending on the substance he tested positive for this time around, it could lead to a longer suspension.

Clear indications

Gruden gave the clearest indication yet that he'll start three rookies on Sunday in Seattle.

Gruden has proved cagey on the starting lineup all week, but he mentioned three rookies after someone asked him Friday on the progress of the team's draft picks from this April.

"We're expecting [Arron] Sears to do it," Gruden said. "We're expecting [Tanard] Jackson. We're expecting Gaines Adams, other guys to do it, and we need them to. We expect them to."

Gruden mentioned them in the same breath as Alex Smith, Carnell Williams, Dan Buenning and Michael Clayton, all players that started as rookies for the Bucs.

Sears is a lock to start at left guard. All indications are that Adams will start at right defensive end and Jackson will start at free safety, though Gruden has not confirmed that either will be a starter this week. It is known that Jackson has worked out with the first team since the end of the preseason.

Have to go watch some swimming now, one of my other four writing jobs. Catch you tomorrow during the in-game blog. MP


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