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Bucs rookie Williams arrested for DUI, will play vs. 49ers

TAMPA, Fla. -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Williams didn't practice after his arrest on a driving under the influence charge early Friday, but coach Raheem Morris said the rookie, who leads the team in receiving this season, will travel to San Francisco and play Sunday against the 49ers.

Williams, a fourth-round draft pick out of Syracuse, was arrested after Florida authorities spotted his black Escalade speeding and weaving in and out of traffic around 2:30 a.m.

Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies said the 23-year-old's eyes were glassy and he smelled like alcohol when they pulled him over.

According to a breathalyzer test, Williams had a .065 blood-alcohol level, which is below Florida's 0.08 percent legal limit. The receiver was released on $500 bond.

Authorities can conduct a DUI investigation if they see signs of impairment and make an arrest regardless of blood-alcohol or urine tests, sheriff's spokesman Larry McKinnon said.

Williams, who has started every game this season, also submitted to a urine test, but McKinnon said the toxicology results could take 4 to 6 weeks.

"I'm very disappointed about the decision he made to be out late, and the worse decision he made to have a drink and drive," Morris said.

The coach added that after "gathering all the facts," he made the decision to allow Williams to travel with the team late Friday.

"He will be disciplined. But it won't have to do with playing time," Morris added. "We'll deal with it internally, like we always do."

"I'm very pleased with his ability to be cooperative and not be disrespectful and make this thing even worse than it could be," Morris added.

Williams, whose stock in April's draft plummeted because of questions about his character in college, leads the Bucs with 40 receptions for 627 yards and five touchdowns. He's first among NFL rookies in receiving yards, second in receptions and tied for first in receiving touchdowns.

Williams was the 101st player selected in the draft. He might well have been picked earlier if not for an academic suspension in 2008 and another off-the-field situation that led to him leaving Syracuse with three games remaining in the 2009 season.

The 6-foot-2, 212-pound receiver has quickly established himself as a go-to target for second-year Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman.

Morris said Williams had been making progress toward leaving questions about his character behind, adding that he hopes the young player learns from his arrest.

"It's disappointing because it was old news, and now you rehash and you've got to talk about it again," Morris said.

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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