'Skins' Taylor arrested on DUI charge

Rookie released on bond after yet another setback

Pro Football

October 29, 2004|By Ken Murray | Ken Murray,SUN STAFF

The latest troubling incident in Sean Taylor's turbulent rookie season with the Washington Redskins will send the 21-year-old safety back to the bench for Sunday's game against the Green Bay Packers.

Arrested early yesterday morning on a charge of drunken driving, Taylor spent four hours in the Fairfax (Va.) County Jail when he refused a breathalyzer test.

The fifth overall pick in last April's draft was released on a $5,000 bond at 10 a.m. yesterday, but still missed the Redskins' practice.

He turned up at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Va., in the afternoon and met with coach Joe Gibbs. The Redskins announced later in the day that Taylor will be inactive for Sunday's game at FedEx Field.

Taylor was stopped by a state trooper on the Capital Beltway in Virginia at about 2:45 a.m. on suspicion he had been drinking.

"He failed some field sobriety tests, was subsequently arrested for driving under the influence," said Lt. Harry Newlin of the Virginia State Police. "He refused a breath test, so he was charged with driving under the influence and refusal of breath test."

Taylor has a court date of Dec. 1, and faces up to one year in prison and/or a $2,500 fine as a first-time offender. If convicted, he also would face discipline from the NFL.

The arrest is the most serious of several problems Taylor has encountered since being drafted.

The former University of Miami star fired two sets of agents - before and after agreeing to a seven-year, $18 million, incentive-laden contract - only to rehire his original representative.

Taylor also was fined $25,000 by the league when he left a mandatory NFL rookie symposium early.

At an offseason minicamp, he incurred vision problems after teammate LaVar Arrington squirted shaving gel into his face in a prank that went too far.

Then the Redskins gave the starting free safety job - for which Taylor was drafted - to third-year player Andre Lott for the season opener. Taylor finally cracked the lineup in Week 3, and picked up both his first sack and first interception in a Week 7 win at Chicago.

Yesterday, Arrington said he has tried to help Taylor in football matters.

"I am going to extend my help and extend my hand, but I am not going to be your daddy," Arrington said. "I am not going to walk around and hold your hand. We all make mistakes. ... He is a great kid and that doesn't change because he has made a mistake."

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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