NFL Notebook

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Associated Press
The NFL notebook …
LAKE FOREST, Ill. ó The Chicago Bears thought Cedric Benson would be their next great running back. He’ll instead go down as one of their biggest disappointments.
The Bears waived Benson on Monday after his second alcohol-related arrest in a month, ending a rocky three-season tenure in which he failed to live up to expectations after starring at Texas.
“Cedric displayed a pattern of behavior we will not tolerate,” general manager Jerry Angelo said in a statement. “As I said this past weekend, you have to protect your job. Everyone in this organization is held accountable for their actions.”
The troubled running back, who didn’t participate in organized team activities Monday after telling the Chicago Tribune he would, issued an apology through sports attorney David Cornwell while maintaining his innocence.
“I apologize for making the poor decision to drink and drive during the early morning of Saturday, June 7th,” Benson said in a statement. “Given the incident last month, it was a particularly bad decision. I have no excuse for this lack of judgment. Though I strongly believe that I am not guilty of any crime, I realize that the public and the Bears organization hold me to higher standard. Though my local attorneys will continue to work hard to prove my innocence, I confess to using poor judgment. Please accept my deepest apology.”
STABLER ARRESTED
ROBERTSDALE, Ala. ó Former NFL star quarterback Ken Stabler was arrested and charged with reckless driving and driving under the influence of alcohol.
Stabler, now a radio analyst for University of Alabama football, was released from jail on $1,000 bond nearly 13 hours after his arrest, police said Monday.
The 62-year-old ex-Crimson Tide quarterback was pulled over for a traffic offense about 12:30 a.m. Sunday, said Brian Middleton, assistant chief of police.
COWBOYS
IRVING, Texas ó Terrell Owens acknowledged Monday having missed a random drug test several weeks ago, blaming it on a “communication problem involving cell phone numbers.”
He also said he was in New York last week talking about his absence with league officials the day he agreed to a $34 million new contract with the Dallas Cowboys.
CAMPAIGNING COACH
SUNSET, S.C. ó Former NFL coach Sam Wyche, the fiery innovator with Cincinnati and Tampa Bay who once scolded his home crowd for throwing snowballs, has recently been spending his days shaking hands and discussing fire hoses.
The man who tutored Joe Montana is vying for a seat on the county council in Pickens, a county of more than 116,000 people in the state’s northwestern foothills.
The way the 63-year-old Wyche sees it, a local politician’s chance to see an idea grow into reality would be like designing a play his team uses to win a game.
“That’s what I like to do,” Wyche said. “I’m looking forward to the public service.”
First, he has to win a primary today against a Republican incumbent and then go on to face a Democratic challenger. So Wyche, who has worked as a substitute teacher in the county and volunteer high school coach in his adopted hometown of Pickens, has been giving speeches at elementary schools and churches.
SEAHAWKS
KIRKLAND, WASH. ó Punter Ryan Plackemeier won’t be back as quickly as his coach. Plackemeier, a former star at Wake Forest, will have surgery Tuesday for a torn pectoral muscle, which apparently happened when the 6-foot-3, 247-pound draft choice in 2006 was lifting weights. The Seahawks don’t know how long they will be without Plackemeier, who has averaged 42.4 yards per punt through his first two seasons.

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