In a suprise announcement, Mark Dominik told the media Aqib Talib will not be suspended in 2011.
Addressing the media just before kickoff against the Miami Dolphins Saturday evening, Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik announced that the NFL would not suspend Aqib Talib for any part of the 2011 after his arrest for aggravated assault last March in Garland, Texas.
“I got off the phone with the league office and we discussed Aqib’s [Talib] situation and he will not be suspended for the 2011 football season,” Dominik said. “Certainly we and the National Football League are going to continue to track the case, and we will proceed accordingly however that pans out, I should say.”
While a suspension was widely thought to be a foregone conclusion after Talib met with commissioner Roger Goodell Tuesday in New York, the announcement caught many by surprise. Dominik spoke frankly about the situation.
“[I’m] not relieved because really that [we are] not that type of organization [and] I do not want him to deal with these kind of things,” Dominik said. “I think Aqib and our football team knows that is not the kind of team we want to be here and build here. We want to be a team that our community sits around as really proud of. I am not relieved because I really do not want to be in these situations anymore.”
The troubled former Jayhawk has had numerous transgressions since coming into the NFL as the Buccaneers’ first-round selection in 2008.
Talib was involved getting into a fight at the league’s rookie symposium in 2008 with former teammate Cory Boyd, and an incident in which he swung a helmet at teammate Donald Penn and hit fellow cornerback Torrie Cox in the face during practice. Those instances went unpunished by the league.
In 2010, Talib was arrested for assaulting a cab driver allegedly punching the driver in the face. The case, which resulted in no jail time, led to a one-game suspension and Talib sat out the 2010 season opener against the Cleveland Browns.
While Talib would not comment about his meeting with the commissioner, apparently his meeting made an impression on Goodell.
“I think they had the opportunity to obviously meet with Aqib Talib up in New York on Tuesday and hear what he has dealt along with his attorney (whatever they could provide them and his agent),” Dominik said. “That is when I had the opportunity to speak to the league office and they to inform us of their decision and we support that as final and we are going to handle it the same way.”
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