Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Marrone doesn't see Dareus-gate as a distraction


First, it was his offseason arrests. Then, a failed conditioning test Saturday. Sunday and Monday, Buffalo Bills defensive tackle was absent from training camp due to a court date for his first alleged crime in Alabama.

Wednesday was the second consecutive day the 24-year-old was in attendance at camp, though still limited due his failed test. He reportedly participated in a slew of conditioning drills including sprints and bike work.

Coach Doug Marrone was peppered with questions about Dareus following Wednesday's workout, and he insisted the on- and off-field issues with the Pro Bowl lineman are not a distraction for him or the team.

"I think it’s a point well taken when you ask how much of a distraction it is for me, it’s really not, when you talk about the players, I don’t think it is for the players at this moment in time," he said via "For us, we’re focusing on getting better each day."

Upon his return to camp, Dareus issued a statement regarding his absence, saying, in part, there are things that he will "need to work on professionally and personally to make sure I can be accountable to myself, my family, this team and this community." He stated he was fully focused on "earning the trust of my teammates, coaches and the fans while continuing to improve as a football player."

His court date Monday yielded an official acceptance into a pre-trial program for his alleged drug charges in Alabama. He's due back in court Sept. 9 to deal with charges stemming from an illegal street race in Hamburg, N.Y.

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